Policy and Legal

Press Releases

Broad-Based Coalition of Business Leaders’ Statement on the 2020 Election

Washington – Today, a broad coalition of business leaders issued the following statement:

“The strength of our nation’s democracy depends on the integrity and fairness of our elections. We urge Americans to exercise their right to vote.

“This election, tens of millions of Americans are expected to vote by mail, and it may be days or even weeks until the outcome is settled. Even under normal circumstances, it can take time to finalize results. We urge all Americans to support the process set out in our federal and state laws and to remain confident in our country’s long tradition of peaceful and fair elections.

“Regardless of the election outcome, we look forward to working with the Administration and the new Congress to ensure a strong and safe economic recovery while working to build long-term prosperity for all Americans.”

The statement was issued by the American Property Casualty Insurance Association, Business Roundtable, ITI, the National Association of Manufacturers, the National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors, the National Retail Federation, the Retail Industry Leaders Association and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

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CONTACTS:
American Property Casualty Insurance Association: Jessica Hanson Hanna, 202-828-7137
Business Roundtable: Jennifer Cummings, (202) 496-3249
Information Technology Industry Council (ITI): Ryan Thornton, (724) 316-8930
National Association of Manufacturers: Jamie Hennigan, (202) 316-6160
National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors: Jade West, (202) 452-6109
National Retail Federation: Mary McGinty, (202) 763-8157
Retail Industry Leaders Association: Melissa Murdock, (202) 381-0627
U.S. Chamber of Commerce: Tim Doyle, (202) 463-5771

Policy and Legal

Senators Introduce R&D Bill

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A coming tax change would make it more expensive for manufacturers to undertake cutting-edge innovation—but a bipartisan Senate bill championed by the NAM is set to change that.

Where we are: Right now, if you’re running a business and you invest in research and development, you can immediately deduct 100% of those expenses in the year in which they are incurred. However, beginning in 2022, businesses will be forced to spread their R&D deductions out over a period of years, making it more expensive for manufacturers to undertake R&D. If this change were to go into effect, the United States would also be the only industrialized country in the world with this policy, harming our ability to compete internationally and invest for growth.

The cavalry arrives: The American Innovation and Jobs Act, a bipartisan bill introduced on Tuesday by Sens. Maggie Hassan (D-NH) and Todd Young (R-IN) would repeal the looming change, allowing businesses to continue to deduct their R&D expenses immediately. The bill would also make the R&D tax credit more accessible and more generous for small businesses.

Why it matters: Manufacturers perform the vast majority—nearly two-thirds—of private-sector R&D in the United States. That work not only helps finance important new projects and technological advancements, but it also helps to create well-paying jobs and power economic growth. That’s why the NAM has been leading the business community in getting bipartisan legislation introduced in the House and now in the Senate to stop this harmful change from going into effect.

A word from the NAM: “Research and development is the lifeblood of manufacturing,” said NAM Senior Director of Tax Policy David Eiselsberg. “It is what drives innovation, competitiveness, economic growth and the creation of high-paying jobs. This legislation will ensure that the tax code continues to support the ability of manufacturers to undertake R&D that will help promote economic and job growth.”

Press Releases

Manufacturers File Suit Against H-1B Rules Jeopardizing Hundreds of Thousands of American Jobs

Washington, D.C. – The National Association of Manufacturers joined several business organizations and academic institutions in filing a lawsuit in federal court against harmful and haphazard rules on H-1B visas that, if left in place, would affect hundreds of thousands of American-based workers and disrupt manufacturers’ ability to hire and retain critical high-skilled talent.

“We need high-skilled innovators now more than ever, and the administration’s attempt to rush these rules forward without properly considering their impact on thousands of people on the front lines of developing vaccines and treatments and making critical supplies, as well as saving lives in our hospitals, could have devastating consequences at a critical moment in our history,” said NAM Senior Vice President and General Counsel Linda Kelly. “Rewriting laws through a dark-of-night-style rulemaking leads to dangerous policy outcomes, and this pair of interim final rules is an illegal attempt to dismantle legal immigration by rendering the H-1B visa program unworkable for hundreds of thousands of American-based workers who are essential to the recovery and renewal of our industry and our economy.”

Background: Earlier this month in federal court, the NAM was victorious in securing an injunction against the administration’s proclamation restricting nonimmigrant visas. Read the NAM’s plan for comprehensive immigration reform, “A Way Forward.” To learn more about the Manufacturers’ Center for Legal Action, click here.

-NAM-

The National Association of Manufacturers is the largest manufacturing association in the United States, representing small and large manufacturers in every industrial sector and in all 50 states. Manufacturing employs more than 12.2 million men and women, contributes $2.05 trillion to the U.S. economy annually, has the largest economic multiplier of any major sector and accounts for 62% of private-sector research and development. The NAM is the powerful voice of the manufacturing community and the leading advocate for a policy agenda that helps manufacturers compete in the global economy and create jobs across the United States. For more information about the NAM or to follow us on Twitter and Facebook, please visit www.nam.org

Policy and Legal

White House Pushes Anti-Counterfeiting Measures

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The Trump administration released a presidential memorandum this week aimed at stopping the flow of counterfeit goods—a big win for manufacturers, and a victory for the NAM, which has pushed aggressively for safeguards against fake products and intellectual property theft.

Why it matters: According to the NAM’s research, fake and counterfeit products cost the United States $131 billion and 325,000 jobs in 2019 alone. In the midst of the global pandemic, as American manufacturers work to deliver day-to-day necessities as well as medical products, therapeutics and treatments, it’s more important than ever to root out counterfeit items that can put lives and livelihoods at risk.

The groundwork: The move follows a report released by the NAM in July, titled “Countering Counterfeits,” which proposed solutions for Congress, the administration and the private sector, including:

  • Requiring e-commerce platforms to reduce the availability of counterfeits;
  • Modernizing enforcement laws and tactics to keep pace with counterfeiting technology;
  • Streamlining government coordination to tackle counterfeit items;
  • Improving private-sector collaboration; and
  • Empowering consumers to avoid counterfeit goods.

The improvements: Many of the NAM’s proposed solutions made it into the memorandum, including a call for legislative action, a directive to focus on counterfeits sold online, a push for better government coordination and a focus on holding e-commerce platforms more directly accountable. The document also expanded the definition for “counterfeit goods” to “deceptive and misleading use in commerce of marks, including trademarks, goods that are trademarked and trade names”—a broader definition that will provide manufacturers more protection.

The last word: “Innovation and intellectual property are the backbone of the manufacturing industry, and America is a global leader on these issues,” said NAM Director of Innovation Policy Stephanie Hall. “This presidential memorandum represents a vital step in protecting the hard work of American manufacturers and strengthening our ability to compete and win around the world.”

Policy and Legal

NAM Joins Lawsuit to Defend SEC Victory

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The NAM is intervening in a lawsuit to help the Securities and Exchange Commission defend a hard-won SEC rule that protects manufacturers and increases oversight of proxy advisory firms.

The background: Investment advisers and fund managers can vote on the policies of companies in which their funds invest. These fund managers often turn for assistance to proxy advisory firms, which recommend which way to vote. The problem is that proxy advisory firms have never been subject to SEC oversight, and as a result, their work has relied on questionable methodologies and ignored conflicts of interest—often causing problems for manufacturers and their shareholders.

The win: After years of NAM advocacy, the SEC approved a landmark rule to regulate proxy advisory firms and increase transparency about the firms’ conflicts of interests and one-size-fits-all methodologies. This was a big victory for the NAM and for manufacturers nationwide.

The lawsuit: Now, proxy advisory firm Institutional Shareholder Services has sued the SEC to stop the rule from going into effect—and the NAM is stepping in to protect the progress it’s made.

  • What we’re doing: The NAM is filing a motion to intervene in the case—which essentially means that, if the motion is granted, it will become a party to the lawsuit, mounting its own defense of the rule in court and participating on the same schedule as the SEC. By taking on the role of intervenor, the NAM will be better able to protect members’ interests and ensure the court understands why the rule is vital to manufacturers.

The bottom line: “The SEC’s rule on proxy advisory firms wasn’t just a victory for the NAM; it was a victory for accountability and transparency, and a victory for manufacturers across the country,” said NAM Senior Litigation Counsel Erica Klenicki. “We are committed to defending this rule in court to ensure that manufacturers’ voices are heard and that manufacturers and manufacturing workers have the protection and support they deserve.”

Press Releases

NAM Fights Efforts to Weaken Oversight of Proxy Advisory Firms

Washington, D.C. – The National Association of Manufacturers filed a motion to intervene in the lawsuit brought by Institutional Shareholder Services against the Securities and Exchange Commission on a recent rule that increases transparency and accountability for so-called “proxy advisory firms.” The NAM is seeking intervenor status to defend the SEC’s rulemaking and to protect publicly traded manufacturers from proxy firms’ conflicts of interest and outsized impact on corporate governance.

“The NAM strongly supported the SEC’s recent rule increasing oversight of proxy advisory firms—a targeted, well-reasoned regulatory solution to a problem that has impacted manufacturers and investors for years,” said NAM Senior Vice President and General Counsel Linda Kelly. “The SEC’s deliberate approach to this issue has resulted in vital reforms that will provide manufacturers and their shareholders with more information about these unregulated actors, and the NAM plans to vigorously defend the rule in court.”

Background: The NAM has long advocated increased oversight of proxy advisory firms—little-known, unregulated entities that exert enormous influence over publicly traded manufacturers. These firms have significant conflicts of interest and issue error-filled, one-size-fits-all proxy voting recommendations that can impact the direction of a business and the value of an investor’s shares. The NAM filed comment with the SEC supporting its proposed rule to provide for increased transparency and accountability, and NAM President and CEO Jay Timmons called the final rule, issued in July, a “long-sought, major win for the industry and millions of manufacturing workers.”

-NAM-

The National Association of Manufacturers is the largest manufacturing association in the United States, representing small and large manufacturers in every industrial sector and in all 50 states. Manufacturing employs more than 12.2 million men and women, contributes $2.05 trillion to the U.S. economy annually, has the largest economic multiplier of any major sector and accounts for 62% of private-sector research and development. The NAM is the powerful voice of the manufacturing community and the leading advocate for a policy agenda that helps manufacturers compete in the global economy and create jobs across the United States. For more information about the NAM or to follow us on Twitter and Facebook, please visit nam.org.

Press Releases

NAM Board Leadership: Manufacturers Will Continue to Lead by Example

Washington, D.C. – The Board leadership of the National Association of Manufacturers is issuing a call to all Americans to observe COVID-19 safety protocols so manufacturers can continue to work to rebuild the economy. Trane Technologies Chairman and CEO and NAM Board Chair Mike Lamach, Dow Chairman and CEO and NAM Board Vice Chair Jim Fitterling, BTE Technologies President and NAM Small and Medium Manufacturers Chair Chuck Wetherington and Protolabs President and CEO and SMM Vice Chair Vicki Holt released the following joint statement:

“As manufacturers for America’s goods and essential products, we have a strong message for our team members and the country. All Americans must do everything in our power to keep our workers, our communities and our fellow citizens safe from COVID-19.

“Our industry will continue manufacturing personal protective equipment, medical supplies and therapeutics, racing to develop a safe and effective vaccine and keeping consumer goods and the food supply plentiful. We have been able to do this throughout the pandemic and keep our workers safe because we follow the science.

“We will continue to set the right example by practicing the guidance outlined by the CDC and other medical experts. That’s why we encourage all Americans to wear a mask, social distance, avoid large gatherings, use contact tracing and quarantine for 14 days if there is direct exposure to the virus, especially when one is tested positive. We are on the front lines of rebuilding our economy, but we cannot do so until we defeat COVID-19, and we cannot defeat COVID-19 if we fail to protect each other.

“COVID-19 has already taken more than 210,000 American lives, and each week that number grows by the thousands. The economic toll has resulted in millions of jobs lost—some permanently. Among those who survive, many will endure lifelong disabilities. It doesn’t have to be this way. We know the science, and we have the tools. We all must follow best practices and look out for each other so we can keep the country open, supply the world and defeat this invisible enemy.”

-NAM-

The National Association of Manufacturers is the largest manufacturing association in the United States, representing small and large manufacturers in every industrial sector and in all 50 states. Manufacturing employs more than 12.1 million men and women, contributes $2.36 trillion to the U.S. economy annually and has the largest economic multiplier of any major sector and accounts for 63% of private-sector research and development. The NAM is the powerful voice of the manufacturing community and the leading advocate for a policy agenda that helps manufacturers compete in the global economy and create jobs across the United States. For more information about the NAM or to follow us on Twitter and Facebook, please visit www.nam.org.

Press Releases

Manufacturers Victorious in Immediate Injunction Against Administration’s Unlawful Visa Ban

Washington, D.C. – The National Association of Manufacturers, as lead plaintiff in NAM v. Department of Homeland Security, released this statement following U.S. District Judge Jeffrey S. White’s decision to grant a preliminary injunction in federal court today. The ruling places an immediate hold on a series of damaging visa restrictions that prevent manufacturers from filling crucial, hard-to-fill jobs to support economic recovery, growth and innovation when we most need it.

“Manufacturers went to court to challenge the administration’s ban on certain visas because the restrictions both undermined our industry at a critical time and conflicted with the law,” said NAM Senior Vice President and General Counsel Linda Kelly. “We are grateful the court recognized the real and immediate harm these restrictions have meant for manufacturers right now and stopped this misguided policy until the court can fully consider the matter.

“We are competing with the rest of the world to find and develop top talent to support innovation in our industry. Today’s decision is a temporary win for manufacturers committed to building that innovation in the United States. A long-term win for manufacturers requires policymakers to support meaningful reforms to our immigration laws that recognize the critical link between smart immigration policy and America’s competitive advantage.”

Background: In July, the NAM filed a motion for a preliminary injunction to immediately halt the Trump administration’s unlawful visa restrictions. This followed a lawsuit by the NAM and several prominent business groups opposing President Donald Trump’s proclamation suspending new nonimmigrant visas.

-NAM-

The National Association of Manufacturers is the largest manufacturing association in the United States, representing small and large manufacturers in every industrial sector and in all 50 states. Manufacturing employs more than 12.1 million men and women, contributes $2.36 trillion to the U.S. economy annually and has the largest economic multiplier of any major sector and accounts for 63% of private-sector research and development. The NAM is the powerful voice of the manufacturing community and the leading advocate for a policy agenda that helps manufacturers compete in the global economy and create jobs across the United States. For more information about the NAM or to follow us on Twitter and Facebook, please visit www.nam.org

Press Releases

Critical Minerals Executive Order Offers Comprehensive Approach to Increase Domestic Production

Washington, D.C. – Today, President Trump signed an Executive Order declaring a National Emergency to expand the domestic mining industry, support mining jobs, alleviate unnecessary permitting delays.

In response to the Executive Order Rachel Jones, NAM’s Vice President of Energy & Resources Policy, released the following statement:

“The country is depending on the many products we make—from equipment for our frontline medical workers to technologies making modern education and entertainment possible for both comfort and safety during these uncertain times. As we look at ways to onshore, this EO takes a smart, comprehensive approach to increase domestic production and processing of these critical mineral resources at the front end of the manufacturing supply chain. Capitalizing on our natural resource potential in a responsible and sustainable way is critical to both competitiveness and improved environmental performance of manufacturing in America.”

-NAM-

The National Association of Manufacturers is the largest manufacturing association in the United States, representing small and large manufacturers in every industrial sector and in all 50 states. Manufacturing employs more than 12.1 million men and women, contributes $2.36 trillion to the U.S. economy annually and has the largest economic multiplier of any major sector and accounts for 63% of private-sector research and development. The NAM is the powerful voice of the manufacturing community and the leading advocate for a policy agenda that helps manufacturers compete in the global economy and create jobs across the United States. For more information about the NAM or to follow us on Twitter and Facebook, please visit www.nam.org

News

NAM Advances 60 Pandemic Policies That Benefit Manufacturers

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When the history of COVID-19 is written, it will probably confirm that this was the greatest mobilization of manufacturing power since World War II. From food to ventilators to the vaccines themselves, manufacturers are making the products that keep Americans safe, comfortable and hopeful. And they’ve done it all while contending with an economic crash, a raft of new regulations and new safety procedures that had to be implemented at top speed.

These extraordinary demands on manufacturers call for an unprecedented degree of policy support, and the NAM is making sure they get it. As of September, the NAM has achieved 60 policy wins for manufacturers. We recently talked to NAM Senior Vice President of Policy and Government Relations Aric Newhouse about the NAM’s work over the past six months. Here is a condensed interview.

The plan: The NAM’s three watchwords throughout the pandemic have been “response, recovery and renewal”—in that order, says Newhouse.

  • “The response phase focused on immediate health care needs like PPE; the recovery phase centered around businesses’ reopening needs and support for employees; and our long-term renewal efforts worked to strengthen the overall sector and economy.”
  • The first few months were occupied with response and recovery, but by late summer, policymakers started thinking about long-term renewal, Newhouse explains.
  • The NAM worked out a broad program of reform, which included onshoring and reshoring policies. “That’s actually a conversation we’ve been driving for a long time, because the U.S. should be the best place in the world to manufacture.”

What’s next? Manufacturing continues to struggle in this recovery phase, so policymakers need to do even more. As Newhouse put it, “A bipartisan stimulus package is important, and we hope Congress can come together with the administration to put additional liquidity into the economy, provide a safety net for employees, support the health care sector and create liability protections for businesses.”

How the NAM succeeded: Relationships were absolutely key, Newhouse says. “In this environment, with so much incoming and so little time, policymakers turned to people they trusted—and that included the NAM. This was a real test of the association’s strategy and credibility, and our hard work over the past few years paid off.”

He continued, “At the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, [NAM President and CEO] Jay [Timmons] called for an all-hands approach. He challenged the NAM to rethink who we are and refocus to ensure we were being as effective as possible to meet the crisis. That’s exactly what we’ve done.”

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