One of the Equipment Dealers Association’s (EDA) primary roles is to advocate on the behalf of our members – equipment dealers throughout the United States and Canada.  Through lobbying efforts we aim to influence Federal legislation that will have a positive impact on the industry and how dealers and their customers do business.  We know firsthand the critical roll our legislators have in promoting and protecting the interests of EDA’s members and we are excited to present our third annual Equipment Dealers Association Legislative Leadership Award.  This award recognizes a lawmaker that helps create a positive business environment for equipment dealers in the United States.  We are proud to announce that the 2019 recipient of the award is Senator Joni Ernst of Iowa.

Senator Ernst was presented with her award during a joint Legislative Fly-In hosted by EDA and the Iowa Nebraska Equipment Dealers Association (INEDA).  The annual event was held in Washington, D.C. from Mach 5-6.  Nearly 40 agriculture and construction equipment dealers were in attendance and worked together to bring a unified message to the Hill.

“As an Iowan, and someone who has spent many hours on the farm, I am proud to be part of our nation’s great agriculture heritage. From pushing for trade policies that support the American farmer and manufacturer to fighting to reduce tax burdens placed on our small businesses, I’m focused on doing the right thing for Iowa agriculture,” said Senator Ernst. “I’m honored to receive this award from the Equipment Dealers Association.”

Senator Ernst, native of Red Oak, Iowa, has dedicated her life to her state and country, having served in the military for over 23 years and now in the United States Senate. In November 2014, Senator Ernst was elected as the first woman to serve in federal elected office from the State of Iowa and also became the first female combat veteran elected to serve in the United States Senate. In Washington, Senator Ernst serves on five Senate committees of major importance: Armed Services; Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry; Environment and Public Works; Judiciary; and Small Business and Entrepreneurship.

Senator Ernst has been an advocate for the Farm Bill, common sense tax reform, education and rural development.  She voted “Yes” for the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act and championed the protection of farmers who rely on crop insurance in the 2018 Farm Bill. Furthermore, Senator Ernst and a bipartisan group of lawmakers recently introduced legislation to reform the process for an administration to issue tariffs on the basis of national security threats to better align with the original intent of the law and to increase congressional oversight of the process. “When bad actors abuse and take advantage of our trade policies in a way that threatens our national security, the president needs to have tools available—such as tariffs under Section 232—to hold them accountable. However, the Department of Defense, not the Department of Commerce, should evaluate and verify the national security basis for these tariffs. Increasing congressional oversight will help the president make decisions that support American jobs while protecting our national security,” said Senator Ernst.

The annual EDA Legislative Fly-In gives representatives of the equipment industry an opportunity to connect, network and share a unified message with members of Congress. “We are privileged to present Senator Ernst with the Equipment Dealers Association Legislative Leadership Award during the Fly-In,” said Kim Rominger, President and CEO of the EDA. “The purpose of this award is to recognize leaders in Washington who promote legislation that benefits our industry and advances EDA’s mission of building the best business environment for equipment dealers.  Senator Ernst is the epitome of an advocate for agriculture and we thank her for her efforts to protect American trade and support farmers.”