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CAP Home > CAP Advocacy > pathpac/about_pathpac.html > PathPAC Frequently Asked Questions

  PathPAC Frequently
  Asked Questions

 

Updated February 11, 2009

What is PathPAC?
Why do pathologists need to get involved?
Why does having a PAC matter?
Why do I have to get involved?
What difference can one pathologist make?
Who makes the decisions about PathPAC?
How do I know where my money is being spent?
Has PAC money been well spent thus far?
How can I keep up with the College’s political activities?
Can I make a corporate contribution to PathPAC?

What is PathPAC?

PathPAC is the CAP’s political action committee, which was organized for the purpose of raising and spending money to elect candidates running for office, who support CAP’s legislative agenda. PathPAC is regulated by the federal government, and all contributions are completely voluntary, limited, and on public record. Contributions made to PathPAC go to support Federal candidates only (U.S. House of Representatives and Senate). PathPAC is the only political action committee that exclusively represents pathology.
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Why do pathologists need to get involved?

The federal government plays a major role in setting the policies that dictate pathology’s future. Lawmakers routinely make decisions that have consequences for pathologists. Since these issues have the potential to define your practices, your political involvement is crucial to ensure the best possible outcomes for pathology. Through PathPAC we can help elect those who understand our profession and share our professional concerns. As lawmakers, these candidates will be more likely to support our views on the issues that affect pathology, making PathPAC a crucial component of CAP’s public policy efforts.
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Why does having a PAC matter?

Every year, the United States Congress considers a multitude of issues that have a profound, lasting impact on our profession, our patients and our practice—issues such as Healthcare Reform, Medicare Physician payments and others. Many other health-related groups are actively involved in these issues as well, but their views are often very different from ours. Through PathPAC we can make sure our voice is heard, above and apart from the rest. PathPAC is a powerful tool that makes the College stronger in this very competitive political environment.
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Why do I have to get involved?

As a PathPAC contributor you make a commitment to your profession’s future. PathPAC ensures that pathology’s voice will be heard on Capitol Hill by providing CAP’s lobbying team with the necessary resources to build relationships with the legislators that are important to pathology. Your contribution to PathPAC is pooled with those of other pathologists to support candidates who share our philosophies, values, and concerns on the issues of importance to our profession.
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What difference can one pathologist make?

There is strength in numbers. Members of Congress recognize the value of political action committees and the concerns of the people who participate in them. The more pathologists who belong to PathPAC, the greater our impact with the Congress. Knowing that there is a nation-wide group backing up our issues, legislators will pay attention. You send a clear message through PathPAC. Candidates who receive PathPAC support get a message: you are a pathologist and you understand the issues that are important to our profession. You expect legislators to make fair and equitable decisions on pathology issues when they are elected. In short, our collective support gives us considerable leverage in electing and retaining pro-pathology lawmakers.
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Who makes the decisions about PathPAC?

The PathPAC Board of Directors, composed of fellow CAP members who are politically active, makes decisions about which candidates to support based on criteria focused on the achievement of the CAP's legislative goals. Only federal candidates deserving PathPAC support receive it. PathPAC is bi-partisan and supports candidates based on criteria that support pathology's legislative agenda, not political affiliation.
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How do I know where my money is being spent?

As a member of PathPAC, you can expand your political influence beyond your own district and state. Your PathPAC dollars are targeted to support candidates all across the country who vote on issues of importance to the College. Every dollar you contribute goes to candidates. No administrative costs are paid from contributions to PathPAC. Every dollar you contribute to PathPAC goes for the direct support of deserving candidates who understand and support our issues.
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Has PAC money been well spent thus far?

Our efforts and involvement are paying off. In the 2008 election cycle, PathPAC contributed over $1,065,000 to 207 races. Overall, PathPAC had a success rate of 91%. In addition, the CAP lobbying team and CAP members have been able to garner valuable face time with legislators, further educating them on issues important to pathology. CAP advocacy, strengthened by these special relationships created with the help of PathPAC, has been able to positively affect a number of issues important to pathologists and their patients.
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How can I keep up with the College’s political activities?

Each member of PathPAC receives an annual report with information detailing PathPAC’s revenue and expenditures. CAP Staff is also available to answer any questions you have. The PathPAC Board welcomes member input.
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Can I make a corporate contribution to PathPAC?

Corporate funds cannot be accepted for contributions to federal candidates, only personal funds, however we can accept corporate contributions for other important political programs and activities. Personal funds are limited to $5,000 per year for PathPAC. Corporate funds for other political activities are unlimited.
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