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WASHINGTON-CUNA was named one of the “most effective” organizations lobbying Capitol Hill, according to a National Journal poll of 82 members of Congress. National Journal’s Congressional Insiders Poll ranked CUNA among the top 10 on the Republican side, receiving three votes. CUNA obtained one vote from the Democrats polled. The only financial institutions group named in the poll was the American Bankers Association, which received one vote from the Republicans and none from the Democrats. National Journal is a weekly magazine covering Capitol Hill. “Clearly, the commitment to make CUNA a `world class trade association’ by the staff, board, state credit union leagues and – most importantly — our member credit unions is reaping results, and gaining the attention of the nation’s lawmakers,” CUNA President and CEO Dan Mica commented. Eleven Senate Republicans, 34 House Republicans, six Senate Democrats, 30 House Democrats, and the one Senate independent were each asked to name the two most effective interest groups on Capitol Hill. With the GOP, CUNA beat out groups like the National Association of Realtors, Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, and the AFL-CIO. On the Democratic side, CUNA’s one vote equaled that of the American Trail Lawyers Association, Motion Picture Association of America, and the National Right to Life Committee. “What may be clear from these results are that the different sides of the political aisles may not necessarily agree with those groups they have named as `most effective,’” Mica said. “However, the lawmakers clearly recognize these groups-and CUNA-as effective in doing their jobs in representing their constituents.” He pointed to the growth of CUNA’s political-involvement programs like Hike the Hill and Project Zip Code. Some quotes (without citation) from the responses that appeared in the March 5 National Journal stated, “Constituents from home are head and shoulders above other interest groups,” while another said, “Effective does not necessarily mean ethical!” Despite the positive review by their target audience, CUNA still has work to do, Mica said. “There is a great deal of work ahead of us,” he said. “Knowing, however, that we are having an impact bolsters us in our efforts to continue that work on behalf of America’s credit unions.”

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