ACC to spend $4m on ads hailing congressional leaders

20 August 2013 22:34  [Source: ICIS news]

WASHINGTON (ICIS)--The American Chemistry Council (ACC) will spend about $4m (€3m) this year in advertising to recognise leadership by key members of Congress on “mission critical” issues for the chemicals industry, the council said on Tuesday.

ACC president Cal Dooley said the chemicals industry trade group expects to highlight  the roles played by about 12 members of Congress by the end of this year on such sector-critical issues as modernising the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), developing a comprehensive domestic energy policy, and a balanced approach to environmental regulations.

Council spokeswoman Anne Kolton said that each of the ad campaigns supporting specific members of Congress “is a healthy buy, with amounts in six figures” for television, radio, print and Internet spots calling attention to their leadership roles.

The ads are run in the senator’s or representative’s home state or district, often for several weeks.

Now in its third year, Dooley said the annual ad campaign is meant to “identify those members of Congress who are committed to providing leadership and advancing policies that allow our industry to grow and innovate and to support broader economic prosperity”.

The TV and other ads are not election oriented and instead, said Dooley, “acknowledge the leadership of Democrat and Republican representatives and senators who are committed to advancing policies aligned with our member companies’ interests”.

For example, the 30-second TV spot hailing the work done by Delaware Democrat Senator Chris Coons notes that it is not easy to achieve results in Washington but that Coons works to bring both sides together to get things done.

The video clip hails Coons’ work on behalf of small businesses, innovative manufacturing and US energy independence and invites the viewer to “call him up, and tell him his leadership makes a difference”.

Other members of Congress who have been featured in the ACC ads include Senator Tom Udall (Democrat-New Mexico), Senator Mitch McConnell (Republican-Kentucky), Senator Kay Hagan (Democrat-North Carolina), Senator John Thune (Republican-South Dakota) and Representative Mike Simpson (Republican-Idaho).

The current media campaign also has highlighted leadership roles by Representative Fred Upton (Republican-Michigan), Representative Steve Scalise (Republican-Louisiana), Senator Mary Landrieu (Democrat-Louisiana) and Senator Joe Manchin (Democrat-West Virginia).

Two more members of Congress will be featured in the ad campaign later this year, according to ACC.

Many of those selected for ACC media support head key committees in Congress, represent energy and industrial states, and some are industry-friendly incumbents who might be facing tough re-election contests in the November 2014 mid-term national elections.

But Dooley said that “our approach is not to invest in ads that run in the political campaign cycle, to confront the onslaught of political ads”.

Instead, he said, the effort is broadly aimed at recognising elected officials who are helping advance the industry and the broader economy and creating jobs in the process.

“We have an opportunity now to capitalise on our low-cost natural gas feedstock,” Dooley said, referring to newly abundant US domestic natgas supplies, in large part due to the shale gas revolution.

But to do so, he said, “We need to have elected officials that understand that having the right environmental and energy policies will allow us to capitalise on this advantage, and that those policies are vital to both us and the broader economy”.

($1 = €0.75)

By: Joe Kamalick
+1 713 525 2653

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