Summer vacation has started but so have AARO's preparations for its advocacy on behalf of overseas Americans in connection with the 2020 elections. I consider it vital that AARO be able to speak authoritatively on your behalf and to focus on the issues that matter most to you. Accordingly, AARO plans to send you a survey in the coming weeks that I hope will enlighten our efforts on your behalf before the election.
But we need your input sooner than that. As you may know, the party conventions are the occasion when, in addition to nominating their presidential candidates, the parties formulate and announce their election platforms. AARO is now working on letters to send the campaign chairpersons that are intended to remind the parties of the issues most important to Americans overseas as well as offer AARO's readiness to assist in the drafting of relevant planks for the party platforms.
In accordance with the key advocacy priorities AARO has identified in the past, we currently plan to communicate to the candidates the following:
- Elimination of citizenship-based taxation as part of the next comprehensive tax reform;
- Modification of FATCA rules and the need to lessen the burden of financial reporting for overseas American taxpayers;
- Lack of access, notification, and due process for overseas Americans in their dealings with U.S. agencies, notably the IRS and Social Security Administration;
- Citizenship & immigration reform, greater access to US States Citizen and Immigration Services from abroad, and increased consular staffing;
- Persistent challenges of overseas voting; and
- The real and legal concerns related to passport revocation.
In advance of receiving the survey we ask you to already start to think about what is important to you. Are your issues on this list? Are there others?
Please respond by no later than 31 July.
Many thanks for your attention, time, and help,
President, Association of Americans Resident Overseas