Raising PAC Donations in an Economic Downturn – Examples from ChryslerJennifer Fox December 2, 2008
Raising Money in an Economic Downturn How can I make my campaign more effective? • Our Political Action Committee (PAC) is the ONLY legal way for your employees to speak with one, powerful voice in support of political candidates aligned with your business interests. Your management needs to understand this message and waterfall it. • Using management structures in place to coordinate PAC efforts helps streamline the messaging for each department and allows for more one on one conversations. • Emphasize any corporate match programs or similar corporate benefits. How do I keep the members I have? • Communication is key. The people who run the campaign for you in each division should be part of your distribution list for political and grassroots materials. Ask for their advice and always keep them in the loop. • PAC Members should have opportunities to express their opinions regarding the public policy initiatives of the company. This can be accomplished through Town Halls with elected officials or briefings with Government Affairs representatives. • Maintain an active and helpful website with the latest information for your PAC members. What if that still isn’t enough? • Consider incentives such as fly ins to DC or prizes for their charitable match group. • Have a clear strategy for the PAC dollars you already have in the bank • Encourage maximum support from the top levels of the company Campaign Goal: Create as many stake holders as possible
Public Policy Affects Every Point on the Value Chain Raw Materials Research Sales & Financing In Use Disposal ProductDevelopment Manufacturing R&D Tax Credits Stimulus Research Programs (H2) Safety and Emissions Mandates CAFE Diesel/SCR FFVs Cost of Ownership Climate Change “Right to Repair” End-of-LifeRegimes Toxic SubstanceDisposal Steel Tariffs Workplace Regulation Air/waste Standards Electric Utility Issues Franchise Laws Bank Charter Consumer Protection Business and Cost Structure Healthcare CostsTrade Agreements Patent Reform Legal Reform
Policy Success Stories at the Federal Level Tax • Economic stimulus bill provides significant tax incentives for businesses to purchase automobiles in 2008 Design Protection • Protected our intellectual property; avoided parts copying Vehicle Safety • Promotes child safety without costly mandates CAFE • Separate car and truck fleets • FFV credits extended through 2019; biodiesel now eligible • Denial of California waiver
Role of Top Executives • Membership • Contribute personally to the PAC and encourage 100% participation from department’s leadership • Endorse the PAC (Campaign March-April 2008) • Speak at employee solicitation meetings • Integrate PAC campaign into dept. town halls, staff meetings • Send general departmental emails encouraging participation • Conduct weekly check-ins and follow-ups during campaign • Support the PAC with staff Advisors and Political Involvement Coordinators (PICS) • Each department appoints advisors and PICs to work with an EAPP professional on a strategy and plan tailored for that department’s eligible class. (Bands 92+) • Encourage employees to volunteer as PICs and allow time for training and campaign activities. • Keep it Simple • Always advise employees they are free to refuse to contribute without fear of reprisal, but help them understand a strong PAC is good for Chrysler and its future.
Key Campaign Events February • Feb. 20: CEO solicitation at Senior Management meeting • Executive communication to departments with outline of campaign and support needed March • Launch Chrysler PAC announcing CEO as Campaign Chair • First “New Chrysler PAC” quarterly newsletter to PAC members • Advisor and PIC training April • 4 – 5 week campaign begins • Large group meetings with CEO and leadership of departments • Leadership e-mails • Small group meetings coordinated through PICs • Week-by-week monitoring by CEO