CORPORATE LOBBY: Criticism grows of ALEC.

  • CORPORATE LOBBY: Criticism grows of ALEC.

I hooted yesterday at billionaire Charles Koch’s complaint about cronyism in government, given that he and his family are spending millions to win friends and influence in every level of government, including by hiring the wife of an Arkansas legislator.

Now comes Common Cause with word of another movement to formalize the partnership between the Koch-backed American Legislative Exchange Council, a thinly disguised lobby for corporate interests, and state and federal legislators. From its release:

Roll Call reported Tuesday that members of the RSC, which includes House Majority Leader Eric Cantor and GOP vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan, plan to meet Friday with state legislators who are members of ALEC. The session at the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, is said to be designed to forge a partnership between Congressional Republicans and ALEC to advance a small-government, pro-business legislative agenda in Washington and in state capitals.

“At the state level, ALEC’s member companies entertain lawmakers behind closed doors, write legislation for them and guide it into law. Their bills have undercut voting rights, led to privatized public schools and prisons, eviscerated environmental regulations and encouraged vigilantism. How does one justify partnering with such an outfit?’ Edgar asked

Any Arkansas state legislators to be on hand? U.S. Reps. Tim Griffin and Rick Crawford are members of the Study Committee partnership with the ALEC lobbying effort.