They Vote on Legislation at the ALEC Annual conference
Earlier this year, six members from the state House of Representatives attended ALEC's annual conference in
. Taxpayers paid for the trip at a cost of $15,000. San Diego
State Rep. Ryan Haynes, R-Knoxville, who attended the August trip, said lawmakers used the conference to get ideas for new legislation.
"You literally look at legislation that other states have passed or are proposing," Haynes said. "You sit around a table and discuss it, and then you vote on the legislation you think should be model legislation" for ALEC.
Blocking Living Wage Laws: With the successful preemption of local minimum wage laws in many states, ALEC has set its sights on overturning even the more limited "living wage" laws that require contractors doing business with cities or counties to pay a decent wage. When Miami-Dade passed a living wage law that extended its local wage minimums to contractors at the local airport,
enacted a law that overturned the part of the local ordinance raising the wages of airport personnel. Even more dramatically, when Atlanta passed a similar living wage law extending its coverage to its airport, the airlines got ALEC legislators to push through legislation overturning not only the living wage for airline employees but for any contractor doing business with the city of Atlanta. Declared ALEC's Earl Ehrhart, the bill's sponsor, "I've been waiting 17 years to pass some good conservative legislation" as he blocked all cities in Georgia from giving any preference to higher-wage contractors over sweatshops bidding to provide public services Florida
ALEC has even been deployed by its corporate masters to bring Congressional leaders to heel when they stray from the big oil political line. When Republican Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert, who has generally been a loyal servant of oil company interests, dared to venture a few minor criticisms of the oil companies, ALEC lined up with other conservative groups to criticize the Speaker for "pandering to polling" and betraying free market principles
The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) stands as a compelling example of the political power that can result when the traditional business-oriented, single-issue organizations operate in conjunction with the multi-issue organizations of the Right. ALEC, founded in 1973 by Paul Weyrich, (also the founder of the Heritage Foundation), is a major player in state tort reform battles. ALEC develops legislation templates for tort reform laws being passed in several states.40 In a June, 2003, commentary41 Weyrich wrote:
Fortunately, we have the organization that is playing a vital role in advancing the conservative agenda where it works best -- the state and local level -- and this organization serves as our early radar system for detecting coming trends and concerns in public policy. . .
As an example of how the states can circumvent
gridlock, Parde says the votes in the U.S. Senate are just not there for substantive tort reform. But approximately a dozen states have used the model legislation developed by ALEC to provide some kind of relief from "jackpot justice," unwarranted settlements that are costly to consumers and businesses and medical practitioners. Washington
I don’t care if ALEC may have written some good legislation –
I don’t want ALEC writing any legislation –
This is the
– we are a democracy United States of America
I DID NOT ELECT THEM –
Corporations should not be writing legislation!
THIS IS WRONG!
Why is it still continuing?
If you don’t’ know what ALEC is – read the piece below.
ALEC –has a annual meeting that is attended by “more than 2,000 state legislators, private sector members, government representatives, and public policy experts come together for this event to confront the problems facing the 50 states” (Wiki)
ALEC – brings together private sector companies – such as Koch Industries and Walmart, for the purpose of “issues are debated by task forces of members, and policies adopted.” AND “ALEC “model bills” (aka Model Legislation) are introduced in task force meetings and voted on by ALEC members at each of three national meetings. Public sector (state legislators) and private sector (companies, foundations and nonprofits) members vote on each model bill separately” (Wiki)
What this means is that private sector companies – such as(but not limited to) right wing companies such as Koch Industries, Coors Brewing, AT&T and Walmart - are writing “model legislation” that legislature members then introduce as State and Federal bills. Some examples of the “model legislation” are posted on a public web site. I’m sure in the “members only” area of the web site more controversial “model legislation” is kept, for members “eyes only”, for legislative members to “copy, print and present” as bills in their State or at the Federal level.
“Our members join for the purpose of having a seat at the table. That’s just what we do, that’s the service we offer. The organization is supported by money from the corporate sector, and, by paying to be members, corporations are allowed the opportunity to sit down at the table and discuss the issues that they have an interest in.” Dennis Bartlett, ALEC, 1997
HELL they are not only buying a seat at the ALEC table,
They are buying a hidden seat in every State legislature.
They are buying a hidden seat in the Federal government.
Someday they may buy the Oval Office.
They are writing “Model Legislation”.
They are subverting democracy!
International Readers – this is not a
US problem only – there is a member of the parliament that belongs to this organization and ALEC has stated that they are planning on going international “This is why ALEC aims to apply for membership as a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) in consultative status with the UN. … ALEC will gain the ability to craft an international agenda, publicly repudiate misinformation, and begin identifying and connecting with allies we have not yet even met. While both getting our message across and ensuring that it does not fall on deaf ears are labor- intensive tasks, both are also critical to the survival and expansion of our international outreach. UK