Make no mistake, due to the rules associated with our tax-exempt 501(c)3 status, which prohibit the NFXF from directly or indirectly participating in, or intervening in, any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for elective public office, we have never endorsed a candidate for any political office and do not now.

However, we do encourage you to do your research. We each need to decide which issues are important to us and then vote. We can’t complain if we sit this one out. I encourage you to visit the websites of all candidates and research their stated positions on the issues that are important to you. With a community as diverse as ours, we all have various issues expanding far beyond Fragile X, which might affect our vote.

The upcoming presidential election is sure to have an impact on our country, your locale and the Fragile X community. Whether its Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, funding of medical research and clinical trials by the NIH, CDC and DOD, amendments to the ABLE act, seclusion and restraint legislation, support for the Fragile X Clinical & Research Consortium (FXCRC), funding for the Gabriella Miller Pediatric Research Act, passage of the 21st Century Cures Act, rules governing payment of minimum (and sub-minimum) wage, services provided through public schools, inclusion, enforcement of the ADA and other laws preventing discrimination, changes to, enforcement of and funding of the IDEA, the continued application of budget sequestration, the 2017-2020 budgets, tax cuts, tax increases, FDA action/approval/endorsement of drugs in the US and abroad or the general health of the economy and the impact the debt and deficit have on the availability of discretionary dollars for the government to spend, this election will have consequences, make no mistake about it!

After the election, we’ll all have work to do. We’ll either get back to business, trying to move our agenda forward with old friends, or set about the business of making and working with new ones. Fragile X and the NFXF are truly nonpartisan and have a proven track record of working with whoever is in power so after you’ve voted start making plans to attend NFXF Advocacy Day 2017. Whether you’ve attended every one of our prior 13 or this will be your first, your voice matters! If Advocacy Day isn’t in your future, then join or start one of the NFXF’s now forming STAR Teams (State Teams for Advocacy Results).

Hope to see you in DC!

Jeffrey CohenJeffrey Cohen is the NFXF’s director of public policy and government affairs. He has previously served as a member of the NFXF Board of Directors as well as the interim executive director of the NFXF. Jeffrey has two children living with FXS who are successfully transitioning into independent and productive adults. Jeffrey holds degrees in business administration and law.