To the Editor:
Why would Edward Lapham suggest that the American International Automobile Dealers Association "fade away," as he did in his March 3 column?
Its mere existence has been beneficial to all dealers, both domestic and international.
AIADA was created in the early 1970s when import dealers needed an organization with a more specific mission, aimed at trade issues.
It certainly is true that the National Automobile Dealers Association represents us all and does a great job. It has represented me for more than 40 years. It has a harder task, covering many more facets of our business.
Lapham wrote, "There are no differences between domestic and international." Excuse me, it doesn't seem right to nitpick one statement out of a whole column, but does he truly believe that AIADA and NADA have the same manufacturer relationship? Trade issues are far less confrontational.
Although AIADA's mission is narrowed to trade issues, its influence on political matters is so evident that NADA gladly accepts and at times requests assistance on items that aren't exactly trade related.
Sure, in my time as AIADA chairman and in subsequent years I have worked arm in arm with Tom Green (NADA's chief of legislative affairs) and NADA on domestic bills. Why? Because it was for the betterment of the industry and because I anticipated a similar response from NADA and Tom on any oncoming trade bill.
The dissolution of AIADA would weaken both organizations. That would be a shame because I think they mesh damn well and are doing a great job.