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WASHINGTON-In American Bankers Association Senior Economist Keith Leggett’s most recent Credit Union Monitor column, he encourages the banking industry to follow CUNA’s lead in uncovering how many members/customers are in each congressional district. “The premise is that once lawmakers see how many credit union customers reside within their districts, they will be intimidated into opposing legislation that is unfavorable to credit unions, such as taxation, or become more supportive of the credit union empire-builders’ growth agenda,” Leggett wrote. The column appeared in the Oct. 28 edition of ABA News. “This raises the obvious question: Do you know how many of your bank’s customers, employees, or shareholders live within you lawmaker’s district?” he asked readers. “If we are going to counter the growth agenda of the credit union empire builders, bankers need to increase their political grassroots involvement.” However, CUNA Vice President of Political Affairs Richard Gose said, the scenario will not work quite the same with bank customers as it will with credit union members. “I welcome the bankers to match up how many customers they have because it further differentiates us from banks because that is exactly what they are: a customer,” he said. Bank customers will not stand up for banks the way credit union members will for their credit unions, Gose predicted. The relationship is not there and they are not as well served, he explained.

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