WASHINGTON, Nov. 4, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The National Association of Professional Insurance Agents (PIA) congratulates the Republican Party on its sweeping mid-term election victory in which it took control of the U.S. House of Representatives.
"The results of the mid-term elections could not have been clearer," said PIA National President Fred Thomas. "The American people voted for a new kind of change, one that is rooted in fiscal responsibility. The members of PIA heartily congratulate the winners, led by presumptive Speaker-designate John Boehner. We look forward to working with the new House GOP leadership on legislation that benefits America's Main Street insurance agents and consumers."
Thomas said he hopes one of the first orders of business will be a repeal of a provision of the recently-enacted healthcare law that requires that businesses of all sizes file a 1099 form with the Internal Revenue Service reporting any purchases they make of goods or services of $600 or more in a tax year from any individual or business, including corporations.
"In fact, legislation to kill this onerous new regulation does not necessarily have to wait until January, when the new Congress convenes," Thomas said. "This could be accomplished on a bipartisan basis in the lame-duck session of Congress set to begin later this month."
Thomas called for passage of proposals to bring down the cost of healthcare, something that has not yet been addressed. In addition, he called for completion of reforms to the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) coupled with a five-year reauthorization, along with a review of the newly-created Federal Insurance Office (FIO) with an eye toward placing additional restrictions on its activities.
The PIA National president, who is a former Montana Senate Majority Leader, noted that because Democrats will retain control of both the U.S. Senate and the White House, good legislation passed in the House may not be enacted. "The threat of a Senate logjam or a presidential veto could stifle positive legislative initiatives. Part of PIA's agenda will be to seek out areas of broad agreement for the benefit of small businesses that are the backbone of our economy."
Thomas said the GOP victory in the House and gains in the Senate will greatly improve prospects that PIA's strong opposition to the expansion of federal regulation to include insurance will be sustained. He also noted that because insurance is state-regulated, changes in governorships and state legislatures as well as a new crop of state insurance commissioners will have a profound effect on the insurance industry.
"One of the messages conveyed by voters was a desire to reduce regulation at the federal level," Thomas added. "We believe that this election bodes well for PIA's long-standing opposition to a takeover by the federal government of insurance regulation from the states, as some have proposed. Lawmakers elected on a strong platform of opposing federal encroachment will have a hard time supporting proposals for more expansive federal regulation through optional federal insurance charters."
Founded in 1931, PIA is a national trade association that represents member insurance agents and their employees who sell and service all kinds of insurance, but specialize in coverage of automobiles, homes and businesses. PIA members are Local Agents Serving Main Street America (SM). PIA's web address is www.pianet.com.
This press release online at: http://www.pianet.org/NewsCenter/PressReleases/11-4-10.htm
SOURCE National Association of Professional Insurance Agents