ALEC, the extreme right wing shadow group, that has been writing legislation for republican officials all over the country, has had a very interesting week. First they have been losing sponsors in a rate not seen, since Rush Limbaugh called all women "sluts". (A current short list of companies that have pulled funding from Alec includes: Coca Cola, Pepsi, Intuit, Kraft, Wendy’s and McDonalds.

Then, even though everyone knows that Alec writes legislation, a Florida legislator dumb enough to forgot to remove ALEC’s mission statement from the top of the bill she introduced. You can see the .PDF here.

Progressives have long tried to expose the influence the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) wields in state house across the country, but Florida state Rep. Rachel Burgin (R) is making it too easy.

Funded almost entirely by large corporations, ALEC produces “model legislation” favorable to industry that state lawmakers can introduce as their own bills. Usually, the legislators tweak the language of the bills to make them state-specific or to obfuscate their origins. Usually, but apparently not always.

Of course ALEC did exactly what you would expect them to do. issue a completely ridiculous press release pretending to be the victim.

For years, ALEC has partnered with legislators to research and develop better, more effective public policies – legislation that creates a more transparent, accountable government, policies that place a priority on free enterprise and consumer choice, and tax policies that are fair, simple and that spur the kind of competiveness that puts Americans back to work.

How funny is it that a shadow group that works with 100% far right republicans, pretends to be transparent victim just trying to do right by America. Yet they could not be any more anti-American. Here is some more information about the American Legislative Exchange Council:

ALEC was founded by this guy(and Wisconsin’s own) Paul Weyrich:

Finally everything you need to know about ALEC and were scared to ask: check out Alec Exposed!


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7 thoughts on “ALEC

  1. ALEC, the latest bogey man. They are an organization that lobbies for the issues that are important to them, just like every other lobbying organization, including unions.

    1. Denis,

      With all due respect, ALEC is not a lobbying organization. ALEC spokespeople have repeatedly stated that they do not lobby nor should they be regarded as a lobbying organization. They are not legally structured as a lobbying entity. They are not bound by nor do they follow the same rules as lobbyists do. As it is, the practice of legal lobbying strains credulity as anything other than a revolving bribery door. Lobbying itself is corrupting government and thoroughly rotting it from inside out.

      But ALEC is another phenomenon altogether. There’s no bogeyman here. Every citizen need be concerned by the myriad of issues raised by ALEC – among them unelected entities literally writing American laws that are being implemented at both the state and federal level. One criticism I haven’t heard raised given ALEC’s structure, but will raise here, is the potential for foreign interests and foreign states to influence American legislation – a very real possibility in a globalized economy dominated by transnational and really supranational corporate entities. ALEC is one vehicle with the potential to facilitate supranational interests.

      I’d also add that it is ludicrous and hypocritical for ALEC to assign “Jeffersonian” principles to its operating values. Its membership, their tactics, and their model legislation represent a far cry from Jefferson’s “Empire of Liberty.” I’m all about Jeffersonian principles and ALEC embodies none.

  2. Do unions not try to influence legislation? They are running a gubernatorial recall to affect legislation. The difference is you agree with their agenda, I suspect.

    1. Denis, OF COURSE labor unions try to influence legislation, as that IS part of their jobs–to protect the rights of their members from being steamrolled by robber barons. That’s why they were needed in the first place!

      I am not a union, so I’m the first in a long line of prima facie evidence of just how wrong you are. Granted that although every union member that I know is especially active in the recall effort, they’re doing it on their own. In the nearly six months that I’ve been involved in organizing for the recall effort, I have yet to come across a single union that’s contributing to the recall in any way.

      A Governor is not a member of the legislature, so claiming that the purpose of a gubernatorial recall is to affect legislation is laughably inane. That’s what the senatorial recalls are for.

      BTW, the same Constitution that guarantees your right to be a pillock in public also guarantees our right to play an active role in choosing our legislation. The difference is that what we’re doing is productive.

      As anybody who has taken the time to learn before posting already knows, this recall is a textbook case of grassroots movements in action. A case in point is the fact that, after five months of being out there in our neighborhood collecting signatures and so forth, our group only recently discovered another group operating in the same area, doing the same things that we were, albeit in their own unique way.

  3. Do you know everyone who works for the unions? Do you know all of the members? Do the unions write legislation in every state that unethical shallow legislators then introduce word for word? Do unions work only with one party? DO the unions have secret national meetings, where legislators make the taxpayers foot the bill to attend and then its all secret meetings where no press or no democrats allowed?

  4. Denis, do you work for ALEC? Are you employed by a member of ALEC? Or have you given up on learning about the influences on the legislators you support? Do you still think for yourself? You clearly don’t know much about ALEC. ALEC takes pains to distinguish themselves as NOT a lobbying organization because that would subject them to some oversight under the law. If you like the idea of a group of 300 multi-national companies, whose interests may or may not align with yours as an American citizen, writing “model legislation” that is then being forwarded by state officials in every state, that’s fine. I assume you’re also satisfied that this service is one for which taxpayers should be willing to pay, since many of our state legislators pay their ALEC dues with taxpayer funds. I challenge you to find a legislator who pays union dues with taxpayer funds. And perhaps a better use of your time would be to ask Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Intuit, Kraft, et al., why they are walking away from ALEC now that this organization is being subjected to a little sunshine.

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