*Delegation meets with RNC–Congressional leaders and GOP allies during week-long visit to Washington.
WASHINGTON–Although the dust has only just settled over the disappointing 1998 mid-term elections–the National Organization of Republican Armenia’s has already initiated its "Road to 2000" campaign to spread the Republican Party’s message–educate GOP lawmakers–energize Armenian American voters–and build winning coalitions toward victories in the Presidential and Congressional races in the year 2000.
The announcement of the "Road to 2000" campaign took place during NORA’s week-long visit to the nation’s capital from Nov. 14 to 21. The visit featured meetings and workshops with senior GOP leaders–top Congressional Republicans–conservative think tanks and advocacy organizations–including Empower America. The NORA delegation discussed their organizational blueprint for the campaign during a strategy session with Patricia Harrison–the Co-Chairman of the Republican National Committee (RNC) and the RNC’s Director of Coalitions Robert George.
"We are extremely gratified by the enthusiastic response our "Road to 2000" campaign has generated within the Republican National Committee and among our many friends in Congress," said NORA Co-Chairwoman Melanie Kerneklian. "Regaining the White House and expanding our majorities in the Senate and House will require vision–commitment and hard work by all Republicans. We are already doing our part."
Among the US Representatives NORA met with were George Radanovich–the author of the Armenian Genocide resolution (H.Con.Res.55) and the Radanovich Amendment which preserved Section 907 of the Freedom Support Act; Joseph Knollenberg–a key member of the House panel which writes the foreign aid bill and a strong supporter of a fair and durable settlement of the Nagorno Karabakh conflict–and; Mark Souder–who has consistently supported NORA’s outreach to the Republican leadership. In each of these meetings–among the topics discussed was the incoming House leadership.
Representatives Radanovich–Souder–Knollenberg–and Commerce Committee Chairman Thomas Bliley–Jr. among others–have agreed to serve on NORA’s national Honorary Board.
NORA also held in-depth discussions with the defense and foreign policy staff of the Senate Republican Policy Committee and the House Republican Policy Committee–which is chaired by Congressman Chris Cox. Among the issues addressed in these meetings were US policy toward Armenia–Turkey and Azerbaijan–Section 907–and the impact of the oil lobby on international affairs.
Off of Capitol Hill–the NORA delegation met with a range of powerful public policy organizations–including Empower America and the Christian Coalition–as well as with leading Armenian American advocacy organizations.