WASHINGTON, DC – Last week, over 100 motorcyclists made the trek to Washington, DC to connect with elected officials from across the country in support of motorcyclists’ rights. Participants included Members of the Motorcycle Riders Foundation, State Motorcycle Rights Organizations (SMROs) and representatives from NCOM, as well as motorcycle clubs all across the country. More than 300 meetings with Members of Congress and their staff took place on May 23.
Dozens of motorcycles lined third Street in front of the U.S. Capitol as rights advocates prepared to discuss issues critical to the 2017 legislative agenda. Among these included supporting the RPM Act, ensuring motorcyclists had a voice within the emerging area of autonomous vehicles, and the reestablished Motorcycle Advisory Council, as well as recommendations concerning the definition of a motorcycle. Notably, participants asked their legislators to support and co-sponsor recently introduced legislative measures citing concerns over the profiling of motorcyclists (H.Res.318 and S.Res154).
Every meeting marked another critical step forward in building and maintaining relationships with congressional offices, and each meeting provided the opportunity to communicate directly with a wide array of lawmakers who are currently considering legislation that would affect the rights of motorcyclists. The event also helped to educate and raise awareness among elected officials about the challenges many motorcyclists face on our nation’s highways. This was demonstrated in an event held in Cannon House Office Building, which allowed Members of Congress and their staff to experience these challenges first hand by using a SMARTrainer which simulates some of the situations riders experience. The SMARTrainer event, sponsored by MRF Awareness & Education, was hosted by Congressman Dave Loebsack of Iowa and was widely-attended.
President of the Board of Directors for the Motorcycle Riders Foundation Kirk ‘Hardtail’ Willard said, “This mobilization of riders from across our nation delivered crucial messages ensuring our voice is heard in Washington. With every Member of Congress representing hundreds of thousands of constituents, this event allows riders to deliver our message in person and hold our lawmakers accountable for protecting our right to ride.”