In November 2017, the National Association of Realtors announced it is considering increasing its political advocacy spending by $30 million annually, i.e. $25 per member. That increase, from about $48 million to about $78 million per year, may mean a dues hike for NAR’s 1.3 million members, unless the nation’s largest real estate trade group decides to shift money from elsewhere. Given the proposed increase and the fast-approaching 2018 U.S. midterm campaign season, it’s worth asking: How is NAR spending its lobbying money now? Inman took a look at the trade group’s political spending on OpenSecrets.org, a comprehensive resource for data on federal campaign contributions and lobbying from the nonpartisan, nonprofit organization Center for Responsive Politics. Open Secrets separates types of spending into three buckets: lobbying, campaign contributions, and independent expenditures (money spent in support of candidates but not given directly to them). Donations to t...
- NAR is one of the most powerful lobbying organizations in the country and puts its money where its mouth is in Washington.
- The trade group spent $64.8 million on the 2015-2016 election cycle, more than nearly any other organization, advocating for tax relief, middle-class homeowners, housing finance reform and other real estate issues.
- NAR supports many federal candidates who are either pro-Realtor or Realtors themselves.
- Spending spans both Democratic and Republican parties, and NAR claims to be the "most bipartisan major PAC" but recent stats show slightly more went to GOP candidates.
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