Recently, my state association (Missouri REALTORS®) asked me to be a Federal Political Coordinator (FPC) to Representative Sam Graves (R-MO). As an FPC, my responsibility is educate and influence my Congressman about the issues that are important to the real estate industry and to find out where he stands on those issues. One of the ways I accomplish this goal is through interaction with him three to four times a year, including attending local fundraisers, delivering RPAC funds, etc. The most important of these, though, is my Hill Visit during MidYear when I descend on his office with a group of Missouri REALTORS® to talk about the most pressing issues of the moment.
This is my 4th year attending the NAR MidYear meetings, but my 1st time attending as an FPC. I’m excited to see the meetings though a different set of eyes. Maybe they will seem the same as they always have, but I have a strong feeling that they will take on an even greater sense of importance than they have in the past. Stay tuned, I’ll be back with more.
This was my 3rd year attending the MidYear meetings, however this was
my 1st time going on the Capitol visits with my state. It definitely
won’t be my last.
The day started with a fantastic lunch at Charlie Palmer Steakhouse.
In addition to all of the usual faces from Missouri, we had 2 special
guests from the Ontario Real Estate Association. They wanted to come
along on our state visits to see what issues are effecting us most and
to see how the whole process works.
After lunch, we broke up into groups and headed up to the Hill to
visit our Senators and Representatives. Though I’ve done this before
at the state level visiting with our local representatives, there’s
something different about being involved in the process in our
Nation’s Capitol. It’s energizing, invigorating, and motivating.
In our first visit, with Rep. Emanuel Cleaver, approximately 17
Missouri REALTORS crammed into his office. When he arrived, we asked
how often his office is jammed full of people like this. He chuckled
to himself and said, “Only when you all are in town.” There’s
something completely gratifying knowing our presence is literally felt
He listened to our issues and asked questions about how certain
programs where working in the real world. He seemed genuinely
interested in our concerns and wanted to know how he could help. He
also cautioned us that there are too many programs expiring before the
end of the year and not enough time to get it all done – which truly
is a harsh reality but one we must face.
The day continued with several other similar visits with Missouri
Representatives. And the feeling was the same at the end on everyone -
we’ve been heard. Now it’s time for the them to go do the job we hired
them to do. I end the day feeling proud and with a true sense of
I can’t wait for next year.
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Yesterday, I had some extra time when I got into town, so I met up with a few friends to check out Newseum, which is touted as Washington D.C.’s most interactive museum. It’s a 7 level museum that’s a fantastic blend of old and new, filled with historical artifacts such as portions of the Berlin Wall, cellphones found at Ground Zero after 911, and even costumes that Tina Fey wore while portraying Sarah Palin on Saturday Night Live. Here are a few of the interesting things I saw:
Portions of the engine from Flight 175 – the 2nd plane that hit the World Trade Center on 9/11
Artifacts from Stephen Colbert’s run for the Presidency
World Map of Freedom of the Press – green = free, yellow = partially free, red = not free
A beautiful quote from from Abraham Lincoln