WHAT IS V-CAP?
V-CAP is the UAW’s political action fund made up of voluntary contributions from UAW members, retirees and their families. The money is used to support pro-worker political candidates who have earned the endorsement of the UAW Community Action Program (CAP).
WHY SHOULD I GIVE TO CAP?
From taxes and trade policy to retirement security and health care to education and infrastructure – politics affects our daily lives. That’s why it’s essential for working families to make our voices heard in local, state and national politics by supporting candidates who support us. One of the most effective ways to do that is by contributing to V-CAP.
WHY DO WE NEED UAW V-CAP? I THOUGHT THE UAW USED DUES MONEY FOR CAMPAIGN CONTRIBUTIONS?
That’s a common misunderstanding. The fact is federal and many state election laws prohibit unions from contributing members’ dues money to political candidates. The only money that can be used for contributions to candidates is money members voluntarily contribute to UAW V-CAP.
HOW DOES UAW CAP DECIDE WHICH CANDIDATES TO SUPPORT?
Candidates are interviewed by screening committee of CAP activists. The screening committee makes its recommendations based on its evaluation of the candidates voting records and/or positions on trade, education, Medicare, retirement security, right-to-work laws, worker’s compensation, unemployment insurance, and other issues that directly affect UAW members and our families.
DOES THE UAW ENDORSE ONLY DEMOCRATS?
No. Endorsements are based on the candidates record and positions on issues, not only on party. Over the years, UAW CAP has endorsed pro-working family Independents and Republicans as well as Democrats.
THE FAT CATS CAN WRITE $1,000 CHECKS TO THEIR CANDIDATES WHILE I CAN ONLY AFFORD A FEW DOLLARS A MONTH FOR V-CAP, SO WHY SHOULD I BOTHER?
That’s exactly why you should contribute to UAW V-CAP. Not many of us are in a position to write big checks to the candidates we support, but when we pool our monthly contributions we can make a big difference in elections. In fact, UAW V-CAP is recognized by elected officials and candidates as one of the largest and most effective PAC’s in American politics.
HOW MUCH CAN UAW V-CAP GIVE TO A CANDIDATE?
The maximum amount any PAC can contribute to a candidate for federal office is $5,000 for the primary election and $5,000 for the general election. Amounts to state candidates vary by state laws.
HOW MUCH SHOULD I CONTRIBUTE TO UAW V-CAP?
That’s entirely up to you. Many contributors to UAW V-CAP give $10.00 each month. That works out to less than 33 cents a day. Of course, you can choose to contribute more or less, depending on your circumstances.
HOW DO I CONTRIBUTE TO UAW V-CAP?
The UAW has negotiated a check-off provision with General Motors, Ford, Chrysler and a number of other employers. To participate in check-off, simply complete and sign a UAW V-CAP check-off card. This card authorizes your employer to deduct the amount of money that you specify from your paycheck, and your contribution is automatically sent to UAW V-CAP. Check-off cards for UAW V-CAP are available from your local union CAP representative.
If you don’t have V-CAP check-off at your workplace, you can still contribute by way of a personal check.
WHAT DOES BUSINESS CONTRIBUTE TO POLITICS?
According to the Center For Responsive Politics, during the 2010 election cycle, business PACs donated about $334 million to federal candidates, and labor PACs contributed $69 million, or about one-fifth the amount business PACs spent. Total election spending by business outpaced labor spending by a ratio of 15-to-1.
Year Business Labor
2010 $1.4 billion $96.6 million
2008 $2 billion $75 million
2006 $1.15 billion $66.8 million
2004 $1.5 billion $62 million
OUR V-CAP DOLLARS MAKE A DIFFERENCE!
In order to protect the gains UAW members and the labor movement have made over the decades, we need to help elect politicians who support our issues and share our values. If we all contribute a modest amount each month to UAW V-CAP, we can ensure that the interests of working families are represented and our voices heard.
“V” MEANS VOLUNTARY
Always remember that both checkoff authorization and the amount to be deducted are purely voluntary. No UAW member can or should be compelled to contribute to the UAW V-CAP fund. A member can cancel his or her uthorization by written request at any time. The keys to increasing participation in V-CAP and our other political action efforts are political education and communication, not high-pressure tactics.
UAW V-CAP is an independent political committee created by the UAW. This committee does not ask for or accept authorization from any candidate and no candidate is responsible for its activities. UAW V-CAP uses the money it receives to make political contributions and expenditures in connection with federal, state and local elections. Contributions to UAW V-CAP are purely voluntary and are without fear of reprisal. All UAW members may be eligible for V-CAP raffle drawings, regardless of whether they make a contribution to UAW V-CAP. Monies contributed to UAW V-CAP constitute a voluntary contribution to a joint fund-raising effort by the UAW and AFL-CIO.