The good news is the election is over. The bad news is for most in the industry, the wrong guy won. At least the political phone calls and TV commercials will finally stop. So will the waiting and worrying about who will be elected. We now know we’ll have another four years of President Obama and at least another two years of the House being controlled by Republicans and the Senate by Democrats, the same balance of power we’ve seen since the 2010 midterm elections.
We can now get on with our lives, and businesses. And whether you are happy with the election results or not, the last couple years haven’t been too bad for the hotel industry’s performance. The economies here and abroad still remain shaky, but that hasn’t slowed steady occupancy and rate growth.
Concerns and challenges over increased regulation under President Obama remain (with issues like healthcare, labor, disability access and banking at the forefront), but there are also reasons for optimism. Under President Obama and with bipartisan support, travel and tourism took center stage with the passing of the Travel Promotion Act and creation of Brand USA. Let’s hope, and push, for more of that and continued efforts to make it easier for travelers to visit this country. Immigration reform could also finally be on tap.
Reach out and get to know your local and state elected officials and make sure they understand which issues are important to you and your business. Continue to work with the AH&LA, AAHOA and the U.S. Travel Association. Let’s not allow political discourse to lead us over any cliffs. Keep the pressure on politicians to work together to find solutions. Gridlock is not the answer.