ALEC is not a lobby; it is not a front group. It is much more powerful than that. Through the secretive meetings of the American Legislative Exchange Council, corporate lobbyists and state legislators vote as equals on ‘model bills’ to change our rights that often benefit the corporations’ bottom line at public expense. ALEC is a pay-to-play operation where corporations buy a seat and a vote on ‘task forces’ to advance their legislative wish lists and can get a tax break for donations, effectively passing these lobbying costs on to taxpayers.
Along with legislators, corporations have membership in ALEC. Corporations sit on ALEC task forces and vote with legislators to approve “model” bills. They have their own corporate governing board which meets jointly with the legislative board. (ALEC says that corporations do not vote on the board.) Corporations fund almost all of ALEC's operations.
Participating legislators, overwhelmingly conservative Republicans, then bring those proposals home and introduce them in statehouses across the land as their own brilliant ideas and important public policy innovations—without disclosing that corporations crafted and voted on the bills.
ALEC boasts that it has over 1,000 of these bills introduced by legislative members every year, with one in every five of them enacted into law. ALEC describes itself as a “unique,” “unparalleled” and “unmatched” organization. We agree. It is as if a state legislature had been reconstituted, yet corporations had pushed the people out the door. READ MORE HERE and see how Educators are handling this legislation below.
Share your story: How would a minimum wage increase help your students and community?
In 1960, the federal minimum wage earned by a single worker was enough to keep a family of two out of poverty. Today there are only four states in the entire country where the minimum wage is enough for even an individual worker with no family to stay above the poverty line. Share your story and help us make the case for an increase!
"The bill puts students in poverty, children with disabilities and those most in need of extra help ahead of politics."
- Arizona educator and NEA President Dennis Van Roekel
Often lost among the partisan rhetoric, talking points and briefing papers dealing with the War on Poverty are the improvements for children and students from poor families.
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