June 17, 2015

No Labels Leaders and Citizens Descend on Capitol Hill to Tout National Strategic Agenda as Priority Issue in 2016 Election

 Jon Huntsman and Joe Lieberman Headline Senate Hearing Focused on Development of Goal-Focused Strategy for Next President's First 100 Days

Congress Buys In: Over 50 Members Call for National Strategic Agenda in House and Senate Resolutions

Post-Hearing Events Include Briefings with about 50 National Political Reporters and Media Training for more than 100 No Labels Citizen Activists from Across the Country

Vice Chairs Al Cardenas and Mack McLarty Welcome Additions to Advisory Board: Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison, Congressman Dick Gephardt, Governor John Engler, Senator Evan Bayh, Congressman Tom Davis, Congresswoman Ellen Tauscher, Retired Navy Admiral Dennis Blair

WASHINGTON, June 17, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- No Labels leaders participated in a series of signature events on and around Capitol Hill, on Wednesday, to make the case for its National Strategic Agenda as a transformational idea that can help unite the country, shape the 2016 electoral debate and provide a proven framework for problem solving in the first 100 days of the next administration.

A day that began with former Senator Joe Lieberman (D-CT), former Governor Jon Huntsman (R-UT) and other No Labels leaders testifying before the Senate Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs Committee continued with a series of media briefings and training events for No Labels activists from across the country.

"We always hear political leaders talk about their desire to unite the country, but lately, there has been no plan for how to actually do it. The National Strategic Agenda is the how," said No Labels National Co-Chairman Jon Huntsman. "As today's events make clear, legions of people inside and outside Washington are recognizing that this simple and powerful concept can break the gridlock that has afflicted our government for far too long."

"The National Strategic Agenda is based on a simple premise: To solve a problem – any problem – you need to set goals, get people to buy into those goals and put a process or plan in place to achieve them," added No Labels National Co-Chairman Joe Lieberman. "This is the way any well-oiled organization runs. It's the only way anything big in Washington has ever gotten done. And it is why the National Strategic Agenda is an idea whose time has come."

At the Senate hearing, Lieberman, along with Huntsman, Co-Chair of the Loews Corporation Andrew Tisch and Merchants Metals CEO Andrea Hogan explained the urgency for a new National Strategic Agenda and painted an ambitious vision for how it could be implemented. This would include the next president, soon after inauguration, inviting leaders of both parties to Camp David to commence work on at least one of the four goals in No Labels' National Strategic Agenda. These goals, which were chosen with input from the American people in a series of national polls No Labels conducted in 2014, are:

  • Create 25 million new jobs over the next 10 years;
  • Secure Medicare and Social Security for another 75 years;
  • Balance the federal budget by 2030; and
  • Make American energy secure by 2024.

A No Labels-backed resolution calling for a National Strategic Agenda based on these four goals (S. Res. 199) was introduced in the U.S. Senate on June 11th by Senators Bill Nelson (D-FL) and John Thune (R-SD). A companion resolution (H. Res.207) has been introduced in the House by U.S. Representatives Tom Reed (R-NY) and Ami Bera (D-CA), along with more than 50 co-sponsors from both parties.

Tisch and Hogan compared their experience in the private sector to the challenges facing the American government.

Said Tisch: "In business, as in government, the road to success is not so different. The first step is to identify a problem or an opportunity. The second step is to figure out how to solve that problem or seize that opportunity. Then, a goal is set that identifies the metrics and the timeline for success. And you hold your team accountable for meeting that goal. That's how we succeed in our business. That's how our government has succeeded in the past, whether it was winning a World War or sending a man to the moon."

Hogan said she knew of "no business that can succeed long-term without a clear vision of what success looks like – a shared, goal-driven agenda of strategic imperatives – and a defined set of tactics aimed at achieving the organization's goals." She went on to marvel at the fact that in "the largest 'enterprise' in the world, the United States of America – all $17 trillion of it in economic output terms – operates precisely this way today."

"We can't allow this to be the case anymore," Hogan concluded.

After the hearing, more than 100 No Labels citizen activists gathered for a No Labels luncheon that included media training while the No Labels' leadership team hosted about 50 national political reporters at a luncheon nearby.

No Labels is running what it calls a "presidential campaign without a candidate" in New Hampshire and will convene the first-ever Problem Solver Convention in Manchester on October 12th, which is designed to attract independent voters and a number of leading presidential candidates from both parties.

"The next president will be a problem solver because the people will demand it," said No Labels Executive Director Margaret Kimbrell. "Thanks to our extensive ground operation in New Hampshire, every presidential candidate will have to have a position on the National Strategic Agenda. And we're confident that candidates will see that this idea is good for them and most important of all, good for our country."

As further evidence that No Labels and the National Strategic Agenda is gaining currency among prominent political leaders in Washington and beyond, co-chairs Huntsman and Lieberman, as along with vice-chairs Al Cardenas and Mack McLarty, welcomed former U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX), former U.S. House Majority Leader Representative Dick Gephardt (D-MO), former Governor John Engler (R-MI), former U.S. Senator Evan Bayh (D-IN), former U.S. Representative Tom Davis (R-VA), former U.S. Representative Ellen Tauscher (D-CA) and Retired U.S. Navy Admiral Dennis Blair to the No Labels Advisory Board.

No Labels is a national movement of Democrats, Republicans and Independents dedicated to a new politics of problem solving. With a network of hundreds of thousands of citizens and local leaders across America and more than 70 allies in the U.S. Congress, No Labels has proposed reform ideas that have been introduced with support across the aisle, passed by Congress, and signed into law, including No Budget, No Pay. Find out more at www.nolabels.org.