Manufacturing and chemical industry business groups are starting to look ahead to the next four years in Washington to see what a change in power could mean for their economic priorities.
Of course, it's a little challenging to get clarity on that future when one presidential candidate is contesting the results. In that way, those groups are like the rest of us, simply looking for some answers.
But both the American Chemistry Council and the National Association of Manufacturers are planning for a Democratic administration. They each issued statements Nov. 7 congratulating former President-elect Joe Biden and California Senator Kamala Harris, now vice president-elect, on a victory.
On policy, ACC was quick to say it hopes a change in power means a move away from President Donald Trump's tariff-driven approach.
"We strongly urge President-elect Biden and his administration to chart a different path for U.S. trade policy," ACC said in its congratulatory statement.
Tariffs on China have split the plastics industry, with mold makers and some processing and machinery companies strongly in favor.
But ACC and the plastics materials sector argued tariffs have hurt their export potential. They're banking on Biden lowering global trade tensions.
"Robust trade in raw materials and finished products helps fuel the growth of our sector here at home, but current costly tariff policy continues to cut into our industry's competitive advantage," ACC said.
ACC also highlighted the importance of shale gas as a feedstock that's driven $205 billion in investment in the chemical industry. In that case, they're playing defense, countering plans of the Biden-Harris ticket to limit new drilling on federal lands and fending off calls from other Democrats for more restrictions.
Whatever the policy differences in administrations, both ACC and NAM said they see the electorate's choice as clear.
ACC called it a "fair and transparent [and] historic and hard fought victory" for the Democrats and NAM said "manufacturers congratulate President-elect Joe Biden on being declared the winner of the presidential election."
For the manufacturing group, NAM CEO Jay Timmons said one of the priorities will be to protect gains under President Trump's tax and regulatory policies.
On the campaign trail, Biden talked about reversing some of Trump's tax cuts to make other investments.
But Timmons said in a Nov. 10 interview on Bloomberg Radio that NAM wants to preserve those and is hopeful Republicans will prevail in runoff elections for Senate seats in Georgia, keeping the GOP in the majority.
"Absolutely if the Republicans control the Senate, that's a bit of a backstop on reversing the great gains we've made when it comes to tax reform," Timmons said.
NAM also said it wanted to keep regulatory gains under the Trump administration.
Timmons said every president enacts policies through their own regulatory pen but he called a Trump change that removed two rules for every new one enacted, as particularly positive.
He said manufacturers pay about $20,000 per employee annually to meet regulatory costs, twice that for U.S. businesses as a whole.
"We actually stopped this continual increase in the cost of regulations on manufacturers," Timmons said. "I think we put that into check."
But it's probably not going to be all playing defense against a Biden government for NAM.
There were areas where the manufacturing group lined up opposite the Donald Trump administration, such as on immigration policy for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA.
And one early high-profile Trump administration initiative, its Manufacturing Council, ended badly. That group disbanded after executives broke with President Trump over his remarks about a violent white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va., in 2017.
I don't think I'm going out on a limb to say NAM may be welcoming a little more stability and predictability in policy making.
Outside of the presidential race, NAM said it saw positives for its manufacturing agenda on Capitol Hill.
It said 48 of the 49 House candidates supported by its political action committee won, and 13 of the 15 Senate candidates it backed either won or were on a path to win.
The group substantially beefed up its PAC spending on congressional races. It said its PAC contributed about $300,000 to federal legislative campaigns this time around, nearly 10 times what it spent in the 2017-18 cycle.
"In looking at the results of the House and Senate elections, it's clear that the candidates who focused on manufacturing priorities won the night," said Jordan Stoick, NAM vice president of government relations. "That's a good thing for getting good pro-manufacturing legislation accomplished whether it's infrastructure investment, defending pro-growth tax policy or passing immigration reform."