Association TRENDS seeks nominations for its annual Leading Association Lobbyists list.
The criteria is simple: Someone you believe is doing his or her association well on Capitol Hill. Success on issues? Sure, but this GR professional also is a formidable relationship builder and communicates well. The person is well-regarded by peers, legislators and staff members. This professional can be on-staff at an association or in a hired firm representing an association.
This nomination is for the accomplished, effective lobbying professional of any age, however, if you know of someone who might be considered an up-and-comer, please name that lobbyist as well.
Please, no self-nominations.
Deadline is Sept. 12. To nominate or for questions, contact managing editor Ed Dalere at 202 464 1662 x116, or edd@AssociationTRENDS.com.
As the writer of both Lobbyblog and one of the authors of this report, I am extremely excited to announce that it is nearly complete and almost ready for sale. While I have gone out of my way to avoid mentioning all the work that has gone into this report the past few weeks, I want to share with LobbyBlog readers part of the release for the Report so that they can know about this landmark study.
The report is the result of one of the largest surveys ever completed of Congressional staff and the lobbying community. Of nearly 3,000 responses, more than 700 came directly from Congressional staff.
“We have been overwhelmed by the number of surveys we’ve gotten back. To get this kind of response from the Congressional community and lobbying industry is incredible” remarked Dr. David Rehr, one of the survey’s creators. “I’m unaware of any Hill survey that is even close to the kind of numbers we’ve been seeing.”
Also shocking is the disconnect the numbers reveal between lobbyists and staff. “Lobbyists with 10, 15, even 20 years of experience may no longer know how best to interact with this current group of Congressional staff. A lot of what they are doing and information they are putting out there is just getting lost in the shuffle. People who have been working in the industry for a long time will be play online pokies amazed, and maybe even disturbed, by the difference in lobbyists’ perception of what staff thinks verses reality.” Remarked Joel Poznansky, President of Columbia Books Inc., parent company of Lobbyists.info & The Original U.S. Congress Handbook.
The report covers with detailed charts and analysis:
· The best ways to contact members of Congress and their staffs
· How changes in Hill demographics that have shifted perspective – and what common practices can now be a waste of resources
· What factors determine who gets access to Members or Hill staff
· How staffers prefer to learn about issues
· What lobbying tactics get results
· Which Congressional staffers are engaged in social media – and why
· How to walk the fine line between information and information overload
· Surprising findings about how staffers view bias in today’s information age and how they weigh it
· How staffers interact with each other and with media during their work day
· What types of media staffers prefer to hear, read and see
Lobbyists.info and the report’s sponsors are also holding a June 12th breakfast for the launch of the report. At the event an expert panel of lobbyists, researchers and Congressional staff, will break down the results and reveal groundbreaking news for an audience of industry insiders and lobbyists. Using the hard numbers in the report, strategies for how to best maximize lobbying time and money will be analyzed, discussed and dissected.
It’s been more than a year, but Lovable Lobbyist is back with a special Valentine’s Day Lovable Lobbyist edition!
With education reauthorization being worked on this year, we wanted to introduce you to one of the people that will be helping to make a difference in the lives of students across the country. Meet Jocelyn Bissonnette, the Director of Government Affairs with the National Association of Federally Impacted Schools, a non-profit that works to ensure that students across the country get the education they deserve, particularly those from military families.
Do you have a personal connection to the nonprofit you work for?
Education has long been a passion of mine. I studied economics and political science in college, but my interest in federal education policy was piqued by a course on social mobility and social change and reinforced through my participation in a literacy-focused tutoring program. I spent a summer teaching middle school in Providence, RI and while that was an incredible experience, I realized that although I wanted to pursue my interests in education, teaching was not for me. I’m fortunate to work for an organization that advocates for and protects the interests of school districts.
What positive things Online Casino would you like people to know about lobbying and advocacy?
My organization lobbies on Impact Aid – an education program that reimburses school districts for the lost local tax revenue associated with the federal presence in their district (anything from military installations to Native American reservations to national parks). I see myself as an advocate: the voice of these school districts on Capitol Hill, protecting their interests and ensuring their voices are represented. NAFIS provides district-specific analysis and legislative expertise vital to the policy-making process. Our members are busy running school districts, and my organization exists to monitor congressional activities on their behalf.
What can people do to get involved in advocacy activities with Impact Aid schools?
NAFIS has a website (www.nafisdc.org) and a Facebook page where we post advocacy activities and action alerts. You can donate to the Federally Impacted Schools Educational Foundation, which provides workshops and training to school personnel. NAFIS also works with the Committee for Education Funding, a broad coalition of educational groups (www.cef.org).
What else makes you lovable outside of your regular work?
I love cooking, cheering on New England sports teams, and seeing shows at local theatres in DC and Northern Virginia. Because of my Armenian heritage, I also enjoy discussing Armenian history and culture.
Last night S.2038, the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act of 2012 (better known as STOCK), passed the Senate in a 96-3 vote. Introduced by Sen. Lieberman (I –Conn.) just over a week ago on the heels of the State of the Union, STOCK will introduce new regulations on Members and select staff regarding the insider information they receive during the course of their jobs. As insiders expected before the amendments began, it also doubled as a referendum on the lobby industry.
Over 40 amendments were offered to the bill (and that was with the limited number set by Maj. Leader Reid), most dealing more with lobbying than insider trading by those on Capitol Hill. As usual with Congress there were some good/interesting ideas introduced and were promptly voted down. So, without further ado, here are the top 5 good ideas that didn’t make it in to STOCK (and were D.O.A. anyways):
5. SA. 1480 – Sen. Heller – No Budget, No Pay. Despite how hard I’ve tried to the contrary, like a lot of Americans I don’t get paid for not doing my job. The populist in me loves when I see bills or amendments like this that will “stick it to those fat cats in Washington.” This amendment would have stopped Member’s pay for as long as they didn’t pass a budget, which has become an increasingly common occurrence. The realist knows that the budget and Approps process isn’t really the fault of individual offices when these things don’t get passed. Additionally, not all Members are rich enough to work for free (though that seems to be quickly changing) but those that do have money would have the upper hand in negotiations because they would have the ability to hold out. That aside, the reason 1480 made the list was because I love the message it sends to people: “not even Congress thinks Congress will do Congress’s job.”
4. SA. 1472 – Sen. Toomey – Earmark Elimination. Ever notice how we always seem to keep talking about the same issues over and over again each year? Like the above, this is one of those things that comes up on the campaign trail when you say how you’re trying to change the system but the old guard won’t let you. For most Members, earmarks are kind of like the cool party. You don’t like them till you can get past the bouncer, but once you get through the door you don’t want to leave. And you sure aren’t about to let someone kick you out once you get in.
3. SA. 1474 – Sen. Coburn – Legislation online at least 72 hours before votes – Talk about the ultimate double edged sword. Everyone has had a situation where this would help out and another it would kill their issue. It doesn’t seem like expanding the timeframe would really help most offices out (it is already required to be online, just buried on the House Rules website), but it would help outside activists and organizations organize their groups for letters and calls. The insider in me thinks a good compromise here would be required the bills to be printed up in a short run with first-come-first-serve and online earlier, just make them harder for outside sources to find.
Interestingly, they set-up this amendment so that it can be ignored if either body has a 2/3 vote, which just shows how both bodies still want the ability to push things through in the middle of the night.
2. SA. 1473 – Sen. Coburn – Preventing Duplicative and overlapping government programs – I firmly believe that Coburn got robbed on this one, which actually did end up with 60 votes (though it required 66 under a technicality about changing Senate rules). I think what gets under online blackjack wiki people’s skin the most about Coburn (aside from, of course, his politics) is that in a very short time in the Senate he has acquired an incredibly good grasp of the rules and procedures. He’s not afraid to take on popular issues or projects, even those that would give dollars to his own state. And Lord knows he has no problems with being unpopular, either among his colleagues or the press, which I think he feeds off of at times.
Having said that, I really wish he would pick his fights better. I get that part of his “charm” is that he’ll always fight any fight that needs fighting, but would it kill him to be a little less contrarian sometimes? I felt like 1473 was kind of an example of his reputation coming back to haunt him. If he was a different senator, I feel like the 66 (Senate rule change needs aside) would have been waived and the amendment gone through. But his relationships with other senators didn’t afford him this generosity, and the requirement to require the 66 kind of felt like a “haha, back at you.” It gave people cover to vote for it while knowing it would never go anyplace. That it even got to 60 made it feel like a taunt.
For the record, I haven’t really heard a good counter-argument to the amendment, though I will admit cleaning up duplicate programs would take a large amount of time and effort when the Congressional Research Service has little to spare. In this election year where we are trying to watch government and spending, it just seems like bad politics to be against this. Maybe the solution is to just not introduce bills for things that are already working…
1. SA 1490 – Sen. Paul – To require former Members of Congress to forfeit Federal retirement benefits if they work as a lobbyist or engage in lobbying activities. I know the idea and similar ones have been floated before, but it seems like kind of a $1,000 solution to a million dollar question. If Members want to lobby, fine, but make them spend at least a minute considering the decision. As written, it is one of those bills that looks much better than would actually work out, and sounds better as a campaign line. Also, with the income an ex-member can make in the private sector, it also would have a muted impact on their bottom line.
If this was going to be more seriously considered, I would consider changing the threshold around a little bit. Maybe set a cap for how much you can receive through lobbying activities before you get kicked off the benefits. Also, do away with trying to pass waiting laws so that ex-Members can maximize their value if they do decide to go that way. Either way, this is a topic that should be brought up and discussed but any answer needs to be decided fairly, both for the public and the Members. It would never in a million years get passed by itself and I respect Paul for trying to ride this one, after all, you can only shoot what is in front of you. But it needs to be work-shopped before it has a chance of passing.
BONUS: SA.1493, Sen. Grassley, DID go through (with 60 votes) and requires the disclosure of “political intelligence activities.” I couldn’t have supported this amendment anymore wholeheartedly than I currently do. Anything that makes being a staffer or lobbyist sound more like something out of an Ian Fleming novel should always be a Congressional priority and being involved with something as shady as “political intelligence” (though the phrase itself might be an oxymoron) perfectly fits that bill.
For the first time in several years, the lobbyists roundly defeated the members of Congress team in the Monday’s Hoops for Hope Foundation All-Star Classic basketball game. The lobbyists handled the Members team, 48-35, for their first victory in several years, putting a stop to any talk of throwing this annual game.
But the fun charity event had a somber note this year, as the late executive director of the American League of Lobbyists was memorialized. Patti Jo Baber (r) died of cancer in December. As the longtime ALL executive director, Baber “helped set [ALL] on the successful path that it’s on today,” and “she played a large role in helping so many kids the Foundation supports,” read a tribute poster displayed at the game in Baber’s honor.
The Classic raises money for underprivileged children in DC. At this year’s event, winners of the Kids Cover Contest for The Original US Congress Handbook were recognized, including overall winner Sasini Wiekramatunga, an eighth-grader from the DC area. Click here to see the winning entries. To preorder The Original Congress Handbook with the winning cover, go to www.uscongresshandbook.com; 15% of the profits from those preorders will go to the Hoops for Hope Foundation. Details: www.alldc.org.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Saturday, July 23, 20 members of the Young Lobbyists Network (YLN), a subgroup of the American League of Lobbyists (ALL), grabbed hammers and nails and helped to build homes in Northeast Washington, D.C. In addition to giving their time, these energetic volunteers also raised more than $1,880 for Habitat for Humanity.
YLN is committed not only to providing networking opportunities and professional development for government relations professionals, but it is also dedicated to bettering the community in which we live.
“Saturday’s YLN Day of Service was an amazing experience,” noted Dakotah Smith, Government Affairs Representative for Bayer MaterialScience LLC and a Habitat for Humanity participant. “Habitat for Humanity is a great organization, and it was very rewarding to have the opportunity to contribute to the hard work that they are doing every day here in the District. As young lobbyists, we are all invested in our community, and this was a great way for us to give back.”
This YLN Day of Service is another example of ALL’s commitment to community involvement. Since professional lobbyists represent the unusual pokies and puffies galleries full spectrum of interests within every town and city in the nation, ALL will continue to be involved with those in need of a home, clothing, tutoring help, and mentoring that shows young men and women that they have real options in choosing a productive career over a life with little future. “The future of our profession is in great hands with this kind of attitude,” said ALL President Howard Marlowe. “Our Young Lobbyists Network is more active this year than ever before, and really raised the bar with this event. It is encouraging to see the enthusiasm and commitment they have for ethical advocacy as well as for their community.”
The Young Lobbyists Network is a group of lobbyists and government relations professionals who are dedicated to professional development, peer-to-peer networking opportunities, and charitable activities throughout the National Capital Region. The YLN is part of the American League of Lobbyists, which has represented the lobbying profession for over 30 years.
Many organizations are exploring mobile apps as a way to enhance lobbying efforts, but they admonish that mobile activity does not replace traditional face-to-face lobbying contacts. Pictured above, the Amnesty International, ONE, and Human Rights Watch Apps for iPhone/iPad
U2 front man Bono, who has oft been cited as one of the better celebrities-turned-lobbyists, announced this week an iPhone app that hopes to make grassroots lobbying more efficient. His anti-poverty organization, ONE, released an app that provides users a script to aid them in talking to elected officials and allows them to call lawmakers with the touch of a button.
The app, and others like it, makes it increasingly easier for Viagra 100mg citizens to contact their lawmakers and more likely that they will. I, for one, often run out of things to read across my apps while commuting via Metro to the next destination, and expect that many commuter citizens encounter the same problem. Mobile advocacy apps will –while solving the trivial problem of commute boredom — put the issues, platform, and means to contact the elected officials literally right at their fingertips, and make it more likely that they will take action.
The American Cancer Society, Human Rights Watch, and Amnesty International have all launched mobile apps in recent months as well. The tools often include news and social media interaction in addition to the advocacy tools.
As NFL negotiations drag on, it is safe to say football fans and players alike — and even President Obama — are tiring of the on-going battle between the NFLPA and the League over contracts. Top receiver and Twitter celebrity Chad Ochocinco told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution‘s D. Orlando Ledbetter, when prompted about whether or not he’d like to play for the Falcons, “It’s a lockout, man. I’m riding bulls. I don’t want to talk about football.”
On the Hill, Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas), the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, and such former NFL players as Reps. Heath Shuler, D-N.C., and Jon Runyan, R-N.J. have all met with players to discuss the impact of a lockout on the economy and the overall jobs crisis.
The league spent a whooping $675,000 lobbying Congress in the first Online Blackjack quarter of 2011, including $60,000 paid to Elmendorf Ryan, which is registered to lobby solely on labor issues. The NFLPA also dished out $60,000 to Executive Director DeMaurice Smith’s former firm, Patton Boggs LLP, to petition Congress on antitrust and labor concerns. For the league, this number is up from the $545,000 spent in the first quarter of last year, though the issues petitioned remain unchanged. However, the addition of Elmendorf Ryan seems to have been solely in anticipation of a labor fight, as the firm was not registered to lobby on behalf of the league this time last year. The Players’ Association, on the other hand, spent significantly less in Q1 2011 than reported in the same quarter last year, when Patton Boggs was paid $110,000 to fight for the players’ interests.
The International Mountain Bicycling Association is hosting a biking adventure through Laurel Hill trails near Occoquan Regional Park to showcase sustainable trail construction principles. The outing, which invites bikers of all experience and skill levels, will be held one week from today, April 29, though the IMBA is requesting that attendees RSVP today.
The organization will provide bikes and other equipment to those who want smokelessinfusionsoftcom electronic cigarettes to join the fun but are underequipped, and will provide shuttles from the Franconia-Springfield Metro station, so there is no excuse not to join fellow Washington-area professionals for an exciting evening of biking, “networking, food, and merriment,” as the flyer says.
For more information, you may visit the IMBA site or contact Government Affairs Coordinator Kristy Kibler at 863-370-2578 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio), a former mayor who was, when he was elected in 1077 at the age of 31 to lead Cleveland, the youngest person ever elected to lead a major city, is now in his 8th Congressional term. In addition to Viagra his service on the Education and Workforce Committee and the Subcommittees on Health Employment Labor and Pensions, Workforce Protections, and Regulatory Affairs Stimulus Oversight and Government Spending, and the Oversight and Government Reform Committee, Kucinich is also, as it turns out, a ventriloquist.
There was an interesting article on Al Jezeera this week blasting the US government as being a plutocracy. The author asserts that American democracy has been sold to the highest bidders. This is nothing new, but the interesting part is an email from a Capitol Hill staffer who was, apparently irritated by being swayed by outside interests (aka lobbyists).
Considering a surveyed, this assertion — and, in particular, the fact that the email is from a Hill aide — is ludicrous.
See the full text of the letter, as printed in Al Jazeera:
Perhaps the best line in the entire article was a quote from PBS commentator and former top LBJ aide Bill Moyers:
“Why isn’t government working for them? Because it has been bought off. It is as simple as that. And until we get clean money we are not going to get clean elections, and until we get clean elections, you can kiss goodbye government of, by, and for the people. Welcome to the plutocracy. ”
As March Madness winds down and we are left with only four teams standing, we took a look at Roll Call‘s “Men’s March Madness in the House” bracket, which matches each school in the tournament with its House representative, to see which Congressmen (and issues) are coming out on top.
Rep. Ben Chandler (D-Ky.) fought his way out of the East. Not only is Chandler the representative for the University of Kentucky’s district, he also obtained his B.A. and J.D. from the school (in 1983 and 1986, respectively). Positioned on the House Select Committee on Intelligence and the Committee on Foreign Affairs, he is perched to address his concerns over national security and the fight against terrorism and reducing forces in Iraq and increasing economic development to maintain stability in Afghanistan. He will also influence further U.S. action in Libya and throughout the ever-crumbling middle East. The fourth term representative of Kentucky’s sixth district will be paired with….
Rep. Joe Courtney (D-Conn.) in the playoff game to decide who will advance to the title game. Though Kentucky is a two-point favorite over U-Conn to win Saturday, Courtney, who graduated from the university’s law school in 1978, may not be ready to concede victory after only three congressional terms. Expect a tough fight from the school whose representative has been a strong advocate for healthcare, veterans, and small businesses.
In a time that is equally troubled by foreign conflict and a domestic economy that we desperately want to peg as recovering, it will be interesting to see which represented issue, er school, advances to the next round (of priority).
The two underdogs in the competition, VCU semenax in australia and Butler, are represented by Reps. Bobby Scott (D-Va.) and Andre Carson (D-Ind.). Scott, now in his 10th term, is a strong proponent of education and youth programs. He is the Ranking Member on the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security and sits on the Subcommittee on the Constitution (both under the Committee of the Judiciary), and is a member of the Committee on Education and the Workforce. Education issues have been pushed out of the forefront of most conversations recently, apparent only in President Obama’s discussion of the budget (particularly, his desire to increase education funding while appropriators continue to push for cuts across the board, including to education spending).
Just as Scott’s legislative agenda is the underdog on the congressional slate, so is the school he represents, with Butler afforded a 2.5 point advantage on the books. However, expect a fight out of VCU (and Scott) as they prepare to go up against Butler, who has won each of its tournament games with a close margin. Butler has been great at rallying from behind (see Southeast regionals), and pulling out the win in the end. Carson, whose committee assignments are all related to financial matters — with seats on the Subcommittee on Capital Markets, Insurance and Government Sponsored Enterprise and the Subcommittee on International Monetary Policy and Trade — will face a similar come-from-behind fight in Congress as he battles against budget-slashing zealots in the House. Even if he beats out Scott to advance to the title game, he (like Butler) is not favored to win a toe-to-toe stand down against House Republicans.
But you never know. That is, after all, the beauty of March Madness.
The USOC will pair up with the Congressional Olympic and Paralympic Caucus today at 1pm to host a free-throw contest in room 2226 of the Rayburn House Office Building. The contest, which was scheduled to coincide with the beginning of March Madness, will raise awareness about US Olympic Committee programs and their impact on Team USA’s success.
Joining Congressional Olympic and Paralympic Caucus founders and co-chairs Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.), Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), Rep. Jim Langevin (D-R.I.), Rep. Dave Reichert (R-Wash.), and Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-Colo.) will be several Olympic and Paralympic champions.
Olympic gold winners Jackie Joyner-Kersee (track & field), Christian Laettner (men’s basketball), Evan Lysacek (figure skating), Shawn Johnson (women’s gymnastics), Teresa Edward (women’s basketball), and Andy Yohe live sex free web cam (sled hockey) will join the Congressmen and staffers on the court. Paralympic track and field athletes April Holmes (gold), Marlon Shirley (gold), Lex Gillette (silver) and Carlos Leon (wounded veteran) will also participate, along with fellow paralympians William “Spanky” Gibson (USOC Paralympic Military Program Athlete), and Alana Nichols, who has won gold medals in skiing and basketball.
USOC CEO Scott Blackmun said via the event’s official press release, “Olympians and Paralympians are a special type of people, committed to ideas like excellence, friendship and respect. I encourage anyone able, to come test their skills against some of America’s greatest role models.”
When one thinks of “lobbying,” power suits, briefcases, maybe a “K St.” sign, maybe even scowling politicians and news headlines come to mind. But it is probably safe to assume that the term does not stir up images of little blue birdies. Yet, increasingly, Twitter is taking center stage in lobbying efforts around the globe.
Twitter was largely credited for the favorable opinion Egyptians received during their revolt for freedom a few weeks ago; had it not been for the American public’s ability to watch the events unfold through the eyes of the citizens on Twitter, the U.S. could have easily (and probably would have) sided with the Egyptian government, as Egypt has traditionally been a key U.S. ally.
In New York, Underheard in New York is trying to bring the plight of the homeless to the forefront of people’s minds in the same way as the Egyptian people. According to their website, the self-described “Millenials” believe the best way “to help the homeless population is by helping them be better heard and understood.” To achieve this, the team of young people has armed four homeless men in the city with prepaid cell phones and Twitter accounts, encouraging them to document their struggles.
One, Danny, Tweeting as @putodanny, hopes to be reunited with his daughter through the site. Albert (@albert814) was laid off as a welder three years ago due to declining eyesight. He hopes to earn culinary certification and become a chef. His co0king test is today. Both Carlos (@jesse550) and Derrick (@awitness2011) tweet often about visiting the library to post resumes. Carlos has 26 years of experience as a paralegal and is hoping to start his own credit collection agency. Derrick wants to own a Christian entertainment facility.
They have built Twitter followings of over 3,000 each (except Carlos, who has yet to tweet). And not only are their stories being told, people are reaching out to help. Already, Danny has received an offer from a professional writer to help him pen a book.
It is impossible to deny the impact social media sites like Twitter is having on day to day activities, the influence on perspectives. Congressmen, regulatory agencies, the president are all engaging with followers on Twitter. If you have yet to embrace social media as an effective avenue to get your message heard, you are missing a world of opportunity.
For more information on social media as an effective Grassroots, Grasstops, and Coalition building platform, join us for our March 28 Lobbying Certificate Program.
It wouldn’t be Super Bowl Sunday if there weren’t behind-the-scenes politics involved. From the president’s beer to no-fly zones, here are some fun facts about some politics behind the Super Bowl:
Green Bay’s Hinterland Brewery, which is brewing the official White House Super Bowl party beer, is represented by the Brewers Association before Congress. The association works on behalf of small breweries to inform Congressmen about not only the brewing process, but the economic plight of the companies, most of which are small businesses. President Obama’s selection of a Pack-land brewery underscores his jobs message, which has taken a depleted focus in light of the crisis in Egypt. It could not hurt his standing in Wisconsin, which is a projected 2011 swing state, either.
No love lost: The president reassures Steelers Nation that he’s “got some love for the Steelers.” Pennsylvania, another key swing state in the coming election, has been a tough state for Obama to win over in the past, thanks to his sometimes-aristocratic language. The president, who has received an honorary jersey from both teams (one signed Charles Woodson Packers jersey with “see you at the White House” scribbled across the number 21, and a personalized OBAMA Steelers jersey) has said he will remain neutral since his beloved Bears are not competing.
2012 watch: Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) is hosting a $4,800 (individuals) to $5,000 (PACs) per ticket fundraiser/Super Bowl party in Dallas. Rep. Sanford Bishop (D-Ga.) is also hosting a Super Bowl party/fundraiser in his home state, but at a mere $1,500 for PACs and $750 for individuals, the price tag is nowhere near that of his Michigan counterpart’s event.
Texas native Sen. John Cornyn (R) will host guests in the NRSC’s luxury suite at Cowboy Stadium as a fundraiser for the committee. It is speculated that Jerry Jones, Cowboys owner and prominent NRSC supporter (Jones donated 25,000 to the committee in 2007), may make an appearance. Cornyn has said he is rooting for the Packers.