In the Tucson Immigration Examiner
SB 1070-Backer ALEC Under Fire for its Legislative Influence
By Luke Witman
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For many, the American Legislative Exchange Council, a powerful and well funded coalition of corporations and lawmakers, first came to the public attention when a 2010 NPR investigation revealed the role that the organization played in influencing SB 1070, a law that many of its members financially benefited from. In particular, those opposed to SB 1070 were outraged to learn that a representative for the private prison industry leader Corrections Corporation of America, a member of ALEC, was present at the meeting where Arizona State Sen. Russell Pearce and other ALEC members wrote the model bill that eventually became SB 1070, a law that ended up funneling thousands into the Arizona private prison system.
This was perhaps the first time that it came to the attention of the public that big business is not only lobbying legislators, but it may at times even be literally writing the legislation that gets passed into law. ... Read More
What is the American Legislative Exchange Council? Is it operating in your best interests or that of corporations and politicians. The following article from The Rood gives some answers.
From voter-ID bills to immigration law, this little-known organization steers American politics.
By Cynthia Gordy
In the fall of 1980, at a religious-right gathering in Dallas, conservative activist Paul Weyrich griped about fellow Christians who held the notion that all U.S. citizens should vote. “I don’t want everybody to vote,” he said plainly. “Elections are not won by a majority of people; they never have been, from the beginning of our country, and they are not now. As a matter of fact, our leverage in the elections quite candidly goes up as the voting populace goes down.”
Thirty-one years later, one of the organizations founded by Weyrich — the American Legislative Exchange Council — may be on track to achieving just that.
Founded in 1973 and known as ALEC, the Washington, D.C.-based group describes itself as “the nation’s largest, nonpartisan, individual public-private membership association of state legislators.” ALEC connects conservative state legislators, who pay a nominal fee of $50 for two years of membership, with corporations that pay tens of thousands of dollars a year to join the organization. … Read More
The Daily Kos has an updated list of ALEC legislative members. The list contains current and former politicians. Ben “Nighthorse” Campbell, a one time Republican is listed as are Colorado State and Colorado U.S. representatives Cory Gardner, Ed Perlmutter, Scott Tipton, Kevin Lundberg, B.J. Nikkel are all on the list.