Bikers Inside the Beltway 2018 Report
Tenacity won out in spite of the rain. The trip, in my estimation, was a success.
We arrived early for a day of MRF Board committee meetings and a day for the actual Board meeting. Duane Justus sat in on both and volunteered for a seat on the funds steering committee. Congratulations, Duane, and thanks for getting involved. Even though I was there, I was appointed interim chair of the Finance committee and appointed to the elections committee. (And I thought you only got volunteered for work if you weren’t around. Guess I was wrong.) That’s a full plate. The meetings were long but effective and I can assure each of you that the MRF is focused on and moving to the future with motivation and substance. Making a difference on the national stage for Motorcyclist’s rights.
The Bikers Inside the Beltway was probably the most successful yet. There were colors and cuts from nationally recognized M/Cs that made an audience with the Senate Judiciary Committee while it was in session. (I would have loved to have been a fly on that wall). I imagine some of those buttoned downed blue hairs had never been within a mile of a 1%er in their lives much less in the committee chambers. The issue was the anti-profiling resolution.
The night before the doorbell ringing, all one hundred fifty plus-bikers met for a planning and coaching session. Just before the meeting was to begin all the cell phones went off: TORNADO WARNINGS. It got black and the rain came down. You couldn’t see across the street. Twenty five minutes later the phones when off again: FLASH FLOOD WARNINGS. That’s how much it rained, and of course, having tried to wait out the rain, Duane and I got caught out in the open. Drenched to the bone and 15 minutes later, we sat in an air conditioned room. Not very smart but at least, having been in meetings the prior two days, we had been fully prepped. Didn’t miss a beat.
Over 150 bikers from over 30 states were represented. Duane and I met with all of our federal delegates or their legislative staff. We discussed ethanol availability, autonomous vehicle safety legislation, motorcycle modification restrictions and anti-profiling. We sat eye to eye with our Senators. I saw this trip as a success because we got movement from the delegates. Senator Mike Crapo has co-sponsored the RPM ACT, motorcycle modification restrictions from the EPA (S-203) and also co-sponsored the anti-profiling resolution S.R.154. These actions will further move the conversations to the national level. I reasonably expect similar action from the office of Senator Risch. I’ll keep you up to date as I monitor Congress.
It was a full day getting our voices heard in the nation’s capital and time well spent. Our representatives in D.C. are beginning to understand that the motorcyclists from their home state of Idaho speak loudly and with knowledge to further protect the rights of motorcyclists in all issues that affect our daily lives.
To all the members of ABATE of North Idaho, thank you for your financial support. Without your support this presence and these accomplishments would not have been possible. I will continue to represent Idaho within the Motorcycle Riders Foundation and to serve both you and the MRF to the best of my abilities.
MRF Representative- Idaho