Candidates with public policy views that are similar to yours can't be helpful unless they are elected. Candidates need two things to be elected: votes and money to get out their message.
The Virginia Nurses PAC makes contributions to candidates for the Virginia House of Delegates and Senate, and to candidates for Governor, Lieutenant Governor and Attorney General who support nursing and quality health care. The Virginia Nurses PAC also endorses candidates who share nursing's views on quality health care and other issues that affect the profession.
What is a PAC?
PAC is short for Political Action Committee. A PAC collects funds from a group of like-minded individuals, and makes contributions to candidates for public office. The dollars you give are pooled with contributions from other contributors to support candidates who understand the issues that affect nursing and health care.
Why have a PAC?
By adding individual contributions together, a PAC can make more significant contributions. Furthermore, the PAC decision makers have resources to research candidates. As a result, PAC contributions more effectively target good candidates.
Political Contributions and Lobbying
Political contributions and lobbying are both crucial elements of a legislative initiative. Political contributions support the lobbying work by helping to elect candidates that have views consistent with those of nurses and to solidify relationships between the candidates and nurses. Lobbying supports the political contributions by letting those candidates who are elected know what nurses believe on specific issues.
With more that 40 health care and insurance PACs operating in Virginia, nurses would be at a significant disadvantage without a PAC.
Should I contribute to the PAC?
YES! Increasingly, legislation and regulation impact the nursing profession. Political contributions and lobbying are both crucial elements of a legislative initiative. Political contributions support the lobbying that helps elect candidates whose views are consistent with nurses and solidify relationships between candidates and nurses. Lobbying supports the political contributions by letting those candidates who are elected know what nurses believe on specific issues.
The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that making political contributions to a candidate is a type of free speech and thus protected by the 1st Amendment. However, federal and state law differ in regards to limits and reporting requirements. In Virginia, there are a few basic rules to remember:
- Individuals and corporations may make contributions;
- There is no limit to the amount of the contribution;
- Contributions are not tax-deductible (state or federal); and
- Contributions made to PACs must be given voluntarily