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Letter Writing 101

First let us give thanks to all the legislative warriors that have been generating letters and lobbying at the state house; you are the folks that make ABATE of SC successful not the state coordinator or other leaders in the spotlight. I thank each and every one of you from the bottom of my heart.

Cathy, Julie, and Norma have all been doing a fine job of generating letters at their local biker hang outs; others such as the Southern Vikings MC have also done an excellent job increasing the effectiveness of our grassroots organization by posting notices of upcoming subcommittee meetings and the like in public places. Our Horry, Berkeley/ Dorchester, and Lexington chapters have all been busy writing many letters at their meetings. As I write this, I am aware that Festus and Screwy of our York chapter will be working the CBA swap meeting in Charlotte to recruit new members and generate still more letters. All of you working behind the scenes and even those not mentioned above, please rest assured you have my love and respect.

Let’s rev up our motors and get ready to succeed again. Please take the time to complete the letter inserted in this newsletter opposing S 40 and mail or deliver it to your state senator; consider making copies and encouraging your friends to do the same.

Why write letters? Letters are an effective way to lobby your elected officials. Even personal visits to the state house are more effective if you leave letters with your legislators explaining the purpose of your visit. When to write letters? Write letters when you wish to have new legislation introduced or when you support or oppose pending legislation. Remember bills are easier to kill when they are still in committee.

Who to write? Write to your elected officials and to committee members where bills of interest reside.

How to write letters? The first and most important part of your letter is the subject line at the top. Keep the subject short and sweet such as: “Oppose S40 Traffic Cameras.” The subject should be followed by a salutation such as “Dear Senator.” The body of your letter is important and should focus on just one issue; keep your letter friendly and on topic. Limit your letter to one page for maximum impact. Don’t forget the complimentary close of your letter such as “Sincerely.” The most important part of your letter is your signature, printed name, voter registration number, and complete mailing address. Your voter registration number adds a great deal of weight to your letter so please write it on the back of your ABATE membership card so you will always have it handy!

How to organize a letter writing effort? Make copies of this month’s insert or visit our web site for more sample letter material. Attend a biker related function and ask folks to sign and complete the letters. I suggest you get their 9 digit zip code to save time routing the letters to the proper legislators. Driver licenses list the 9 digit zip code of the holder.

How to route letters from the general public? You may lookup legislators by the 9 digit zip code of voters in their districts at http:// zipcodesearch.exe

Consider hand delivering the letters collected; others and I who have taken time off from work to ride to the capitol to deliver these letters can attest that is both a fun and rewarding experience. If you have questions or comments about this subject, please feel free to contact me at or 843-345-5926.

Have I done that which I can do to the best of my ability? HELL NO but I'm still trying!

FastFred Ruddock
ABATE of SC State Coordinator

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