As you may well be aware, there’s a big “fly-in” event going on in Washington D.C. today – March 17 – organized by opponents of proposed SEC Rule151A.
I know these things have to be planned well in advance, but I can’t help wondering if the organizers are a bit disappointed with the timing of their event, given the frenzy of congressional activity going on this week with the much-publicized final push to move health care reform legislation through the House of Representatives by the end of the week.
“In nearly 30 years of doing this, I can’t remember a time when there has been as much focused and frenetic activity,” said Ron Pollock, executive director of consumer group Families USA, in a McClatchy Newspapers article on Tuesday responding to the political commotion over the health care reform push. Probably not the best time to visit Capitol Hill and capture a lawmaker’s full attention.
Fortunately for the organizers – the Independent Fixed Annuities Agents Council (IFAAC), representing agents, agencies and independent marketing organizations; NAFA, representing insurers and producers; and the Coalition for Insured Products, representing insurers – the fly-in’s sights are set on the Senate as opposed to the House.
While H.R. 2733, the Meeks-Price Bill, already has more than 70 representatives as co-sponsors for the House bill that would clarify that fixed indexed annuities are not securities, Wednesday’s anticipated 100-plus fly-in participants are working to win support for S. 1389, the Senate’s companion bill to H.R. 2733, or the Indexed Annuities and Insurance Products Classification Act of 2009. Passage of the bill would essentially render moot the SEC’s attempt to classify FIAs as securities subject to SEC control and oversight. For life insurance agents who are not licensed as securities brokers, implementation of Rule 151A would mean that they would have to spend significant amounts of time and money to become licensed to sell securities.
While the intense spotlight on health care reform at the moment may blind the mainstream media to the fly-in’s efforts, you can stay informed with the help of National Underwriter‘s Allison Bell, who is attending and tweeting from the event. Follow her live from Capitol Hill at: http://www.lifeandhealthinsurancenews.com/rule151a and ask her questions via Twitter at http://twitter.com/NatUndLife using the Twitter hashtag #rule151a.
More blog entries from Brian Anderson.