About GOP-Supported ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council)

In the last few months this group has been in the news lately. I have to admit that I had never even heard of ALEC and was not even on my radar (thanks to Maddow now they are), so needless to say, I have been trying to catch up on finding out specifics about this organization, what it is they stand for and what is their purpose.

Just an FYI, what was most startling is they actually write bills or provide “model legislation” that have actually passed, some virtually verbatim, i.e., the Arizona immigration law. Each year approximately 800 bills are introduced in the states which are based in whole or in part on ALEC model legislation. Annually, about 20% of these introduced bills become law.

I have been to many different websites, read many articles and this is what I found.

Who they are:
I found 2 mission statements, one from their website and the other Wikipedia, but both pretty much are the same.

 ALEC website:
…to advance the Jeffersonian principles of free markets, limited government, federalism, and individual liberty, through a nonpartisan public-private partnership of America’s state legislators, members of the private sector, the federal government, and general public.

…to promote these principles by developing policies that ensure the powers of government are derived from, and assigned to, first the People, then the States, and finally, the Federal Government.

…to enlist state legislators from all parties and members of the private sector who share ALEC’s mission.

…to conduct a policy making program that unites members of the public and private sectors in a dynamic partnership to support research, policy development, and dissemination activities.

…to prepare the next generation of political leadership through educational programs that promote the principles of Jeffersonian democracy, which are necessary for a free society.

Wikipedia: To advance the principles of free markets, limited government, federalism, and individual liberty, through a partnership between America’s state legislators and concerned members of the private sector, policy experts and the general public. ALEC brings state lawmakers and business people together to substantively create policy. Both public and private task force members have a voice and a vote in shaping bills. In addition to state lawmakers, ALEC consists of about 300 corporate, foundation, and other private sector members.

Who belongs to ALEC:
See if a representative from your state is listed.

Board Members
South Carolina Representative Liston Barfield
Utah Senator Curt Bramble
North Carolina Representative Harold Brubaker
Indiana Senator Jim Buck
Texas Representative Tom Craddick
New Mexico Senator Kent Cravens
Mississippi Representative Jim Ellington
Louisiana Representative Noble Ellington
Indiana Representative Dave Frizzell
Mississippi Senator Billy Hewes III
Virginia Representative Bill Howell
New York Senator Owen Johnson
Arkansas Senator Michael Lamoureux
Tennessee Representative Steve McDaniel
Kansas Senator Ray Merrick
Connecticut Representative John Piscopo
Nevada Senator Bill Raggio
Nevada Senator Dean Rhoads
Georgia Senator Chip Rogers
Ohio Senator William Seitz
Tennessee Representative Curry Todd
Iowa Representative Linda Upmeyer
Kansas Senator Susan Wagle

Private Enterprise Board
Ms. Sano Blocker, Energy Future Holdings
Mr. Don Bohn, Johnson & Johnson
Mr. Jeff Bond, PhRMA
Mr. Bill Carmichael, American Bail Coalition
Mr. Derek Crawford, Kraft Foods, Inc.
Mr. John Del Giorno, GlaxoSmithKline
Mr. Matt Echols, Coca-Cola Company
Mr. Jim Epperson, Jr., AT&T Services, Inc.
Mr. Michael Hubert, Pfizer Inc
Ms. Teresa Jennings, Reed Elsevier, Inc.
Mr. Ken Lane, DIAGEO
Mr. Kelly Mader, Peabody Energy
Mr. Bernie McKay, Intuit, Inc.
Mr. Mike Morgan, Koch Industries, Inc.
Mr. Kevin Murphy, ExxonMobil Corp.
Mrs. Sandra Oliver, Bayer Corporation
Mr. David Powers, Reynolds American Inc.
Ms. Maggie Sans, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
Mr. Russell Smoldon, Salt River Project
Mr. Toby Spangler, Altria Client Services, Inc.
Mr. Roland Spies, State Farm Insurance Co.
Mr. Pat Thomas, United Parcel Service
Mr. Jerry Watson, Chairman Emeritus

Model Legislation: 
Below has been gathered from multiple sites including the ALEC site.

One of the most important resources ALEC provides to its members is model legislation. Through the combined effort and unique partnership of public and private sector members, model legislation is drafted, deliberated and approved by one of ALEC’s nine Task Forces. These bills provide a valuable framework for developing effective policy ideas aimed at protecting and expanding our free society.

ALEC’s public sector Board of Directors has thirty days to review, and approve or reject, each bill before it becomes official ALEC policy. Legislative members can introduce ALEC model bills in their states and amend them as best fits their needs.

While ALEC provides the resources, our members, long known for their legislative activism, introduced hundreds of bills based on ALEC model legislation. During the latest legislative cycle, dozens of ALEC model bills were enacted into law.

ALEC has approximately three hundred private sector members including corporations, state and national think tanks, and trade associations. Some corporations and trade groups that have supported ALEC include: American Nuclear Energy Council, American Petroleum Institute, Coors Brewing Company, Texaco, PhRMA, Philip Morris, R.J. Reynolds Tobacco, VISA, Exxon Mobile, NRA, Amway and others.

Groups critical of ALEC claim that the organization is controlled by the entities that fund it, subsequently promoting donors’ agendas and goals, along with attempting to advance legislation which favors their interests.

I will be continuing my research of them and find out just how much influence they have. Would love to hear what you think and if you have anything to add.

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2 responses to “About GOP-Supported ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council)

  1. Elaine Williams, Baltimore, Maryland

    I first heard about ALEC on NPR when the Arizona Immigration Law broke! I nearly ran my car off the road. More people need to know about this. All one needs to look at is the list of who belongs! Big business, Big pharma, Big agriculture, Private jailers (I had no idea this actually existed until the story on NPR), huge conglomerations that have bought up every business around them (Coca-Cola to name one), Big energy, Big oil! It all makes me sick. I pray that the American people sit up and take notice!

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