Situation

A mid-size financial services company was alerted to draft legislative language that would have created a complex dual regulatory structure and directly impacted one of their primary products. Based on legal and financial analysis of the draft language, the new regulatory structure would have required an 80% increase in product pricing to maintain product viability.

Approach

The retainer firm developed a strategic advocacy plan for educating Members of Congress on the unintended consequences of the draft legislation and the value of the product in question to consumers. The firm worked with the client to finalized key arguments and messaging. The firm then identified which Members of Congress should be prioritized for outreach. Following approval from the client, the firm put the plan into action, meeting with 32 offices, conducting follow-up, and communicating progress to the client. The issue was brought to all target offices, committee leadership, and administration officials identified by the firm as key stakeholders. Initial pushback was met with data and pro-consumer arguments, showing the value of the product and the importance to constituents.

Impact

A bipartisan group of Members of Congress chose to advocate for removing the provisions that would have caused unintended financial harm. The effort received pushback from the groups supportive of the draft legislation. Careful strategic planning and targeted education of key stakeholders resulted in the provision being defeated and removed from the legislative package during committee markup. Further advocacy ensured that subsequent efforts to add the problematic provision were also defeated on the House Floor, in Senate markup, and on the Senate Floor.

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