Tag Archives | ALEC

Michigan ALEC meeting flops when (almost) nobody shows up

This past week, the corporatist front group and bill mill for corporate America, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), held a breakfast gathering for Michigan state legislators. Our friends at Progress Michigan were there and reported that only SIX legislators actually attended. Here is the all-Republican list of attendees:

  • Rep. Aric Nesbitt (R-Lawton)
  • Rep. Peter Pettalia (R-Presque Isle)
  • Rep. Triston Cole (R-Mancelona)
  • Rep. Tim Kelly (R-Saginaw)
  • Rep. Jim Runestad (R-White Lake)
  • Senator Mike Green (R-Mayville)

According to Progess Michigan, Sen. Green and Rep. Nesbitt are Michigan’s ALEC co-chairs and were listed on the invitation to the event.

As Progresss Michigan Executive Director Lonnie Scott explains, this is a hopeful sign that the Koch brothers-supported corporate lobby group is experiencing a drop in influence, at least in Michigan:

Even one ALEC enthused legislator can lead to horrible public policy.…
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While progressives try to catch up with ALEC in the states, ALEC moves to the cities and counties

The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), a Koch brothers-funded group that churns out pro-business model legislation for state legislators, has been incredibly effective at impacting policy at the state level. A recent study shows just how effective they have been:

Building on research I am conducting with Konstantin Kashin, I used text analysis of ALEC’s model legislation, along with all state legislation introduced and enacted since the mid-1990s, to identify instances when state governments enacted ALEC-authored bills related to public unions. (In all, I counted twelve enactments of ALEC reform bills across eight states.) These bills generally followed several common patterns, such as provisions making it more challenging for labor unions to automatically collect dues from workers, and making it easier for states to contract out services that were previously performed by public workers.…
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BREAKING: Yahoo! leaves ALEC

In another blow to the corporate front group American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), another internet powerhouse is leaving the pro-Big Business “bill mill”.

From Common Cause:

Yahoo issued the following statement to Common Cause Wednesday night:

“We’ve decided to discontinue our membership in ALEC. We periodically review our membership in organizations and, at this time, we will no longer participate in the ALEC Task Force on Communications and Technology.”

This comes after recent departures of Microsoft, Google, Yelp, and, and Facebook.

When Google left, ALEC released a completely disingenuous response saying, in part, “ALEC believes renewable energy should expand based on consumer demand, not as a result of a government mandate.” What this statement neglects to point out is that, through their model legislation and intense lobbying efforts, ALEC actually interferes with the so-called free market by tipping the playing field in the direction of fossil fuel interests like coal, oil, gas, and other petroleum producers.…

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BREAKING: Yelp leaves ALEC. Will Yahoo! be next? (UPDATED)

Technology giants Microsoft, Google, and Facebook have all made recent announcements that they have or are leaving the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), the corporatist group that puts out pro-business model legislation to shape state policy and laws to benefit Big Business.

Now the online giant Yelp is joining them.

Via Common Cause:

Internet powerhouse Yelp, which specializes in helping consumers find products and services in their communities, confirmed Wednesday that it has found its way out of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC).

“Yelp is not a member of ALEC,” said Luther Lowe, the company’s public policy director. The firm’s membership in the lobbying organization expired and Yelp decided to sever connections with ALEC several months ago, he added.

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BREAKING: Facebook to leave ALEC

On the heels of Microsoft, and then Google, leaving the American Legislative Exchange Council, a Facebook spokesperson now says that they will leave the corporatist front group in 2015, as well:

Google’s departure, “really puts Facebook and Yahoo in an uncomfortable position,” said Jay Riestenberg, a research analyst with Common Cause who follows ALEC.

Facebook may be next out the ALEC door, a company spokesperson told The Chronicle on Tuesday.

“We re-evaluate our memberships on an annual basis and are in that process now,” a company representative wrote in an e-mail to the newspaper. “While we have tried to work within ALEC to bring that organization closer to our view on some key issues, it seems unlikely that we will make sufficient progress so we are not likely to renew our membership in 2015.”

This is how you bleed corporatist groups dry.…

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A victory for democracy: Google leaves ALEC, ALEC haz a sad

Today on The Diane Rehm Show, Google CEO Eric Schmidt revealed that the internet giant was leaving the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). ALEC, a front group for corporate interests, puts out business-friendly model legislation for its legislative members to use to create laws in their own states. There has been massive pressure on Google to leave, especially after Microsoft pulled out of ALEC last month.

Here’s how it went down:

DIANE REHM: Ok, and I think we have time for one last caller. Let’s go to Kristin in Syracuse, NY. Quick question, Kristin.

KRISTIN: Hi, yes, thank you so much for taking my call, Diane.

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Microsoft ends its relationship with American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC)

The Sustainability Group, a group aimed at fostering socially responsible investment, along with Walden Asset Management, which offers portfolio management services to socially responsive investors, have been working with Microsoft to encourage it to end its relationship with the corporatist group American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC.) ALEC is responsible for much of the pro-corporation, anti-union, anti-regulation legislation introduced in state legislatures across the country. Even Michigan’s so-called “right to work” law was derived from ALEC model legislation.

The Sustainability Group was successful. From a statement released today:

Last year, The Sustainability Group of Loring, Wolcott and Coolidge and Walden Asset Management engaged Microsoft over its affiliation with the controversial model legislation group American Legislative Exchange Council, or ALEC.…
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As ALEC ramps up its opposition to EPA regulations through state Attorneys General, Bill Schuette is their poster child

Corporatism is alive and well in state governments across the USA

The Guardian newspaper has a blockbuster piece out today that shows how the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), has turned to working through state Attorneys General to stop any efforts by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to regulate greenhouse gas emissions.

The Guardian has learned that the American Legislative Exchange Council (Alec), a free market group of state legislators funded in part by coal and oil companies such as Peabody Energy and Koch Industries, launched a much broader style of campaigning in 2014 to block the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) from cutting greenhouse gas emissions from power plants.…
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Medicaid expansion bill passed by Senate Republicans even has a place for ALEC & other corporate-funded groups

Of course ALEC has a place in Michigan’s expansion of Medicaid. They probably helped write the bill.

After Senate Republicans passed H.B. 4714 on Tuesday to expand Medicaid to cover an additional 470,000 people, I thought it would be smart to have a look at just what’s in this legislation. I discovered that about 24 pages of the 40-page bill is new content, added on to the Social Welfare Act of 1939. A large amount of the new content consists of admonitions that the law will be void if the federal government (a) doesn’t give them the two waivers they need to comply with the Affordable Care Act and (b) gives them one penny less than the full amount to cover the program as promised.…

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INTERVIEW: Wisconsin legislator Chris Taylor peeks behind the ALEC curtain (via Moyers & Co.)

Confirming what has long been accepted: ALEC is nothing more than a front group for corporate interests

The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) calls itself “a nonpartisan public-private partnership of America’s state legislators, members of the private sector and the general public” that “works to advance the fundamental principles of free-market enterprise, limited government, and federalism at the state level”. It’s true that they are nonpartisan. However, what they don’t tell us, though the use of the phrase “free-market enterprise, limited government, and federalism” is a dead give-away, is that they are nothing more than a front group for corporations whose intentions are to advance legislation across the USA that is exclusively to the benefit of corporations.…

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