Important news on ALEC:
The right-wing legislation crafting group has decided to drop its task force that deals with "non-economic" issues, such as voter suppression and "stand your ground" gun laws.
Instead, it will "sharpen its focus on jobs, free markets, and growth," says ALEC.
13 corporate members have fled ALEC since the beginning of April: Coke, Pepsi, Kraft, Intuit, McDonald's, Wendy's, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Reed Elsevier, Mars and American Traffic Solutions, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Yum! Brands (owner of Taco Bell, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Pizza Hut), and Procter & Gamble.
AT&T, State Farm and Johnson & Johnson have refused to leave thus far, despite many thousands of calls and emails.
Clearly, ALEC made the announcement to halt the exodus of corporate members. Although corporations seems comfortable working with a right-wing group on tax and regulatory policies that favorably impact their business, they are drawing the line on issues such as voting rights and gun control.
ALEC planned to go beyond restrictive Voter ID laws to limiting the ability of citizens to petition for referendums and constitutional changes that favor workers and communities.
Progressive groups mounted a strong campaign for corporate members to resign after Trayvon Martin's tragic death in Florida and ALEC's "stand your ground" gun laws entered the spotlight.
ALEC's statement says:
Our legislative board last week unanimously agreed to further our work on policies that will help spur innovation and competitiveness across the country.
We are refocusing our commitment to free-market, limited government and pro-growth principles, and have made changes internally to reflect this renewed focus.
We are eliminating the ALEC Public Safety and Elections task force that dealt with non-economic issues, and reinvesting these resources in the task forces that focus on the economy. The remaining budgetary and economic issues will be reassigned.
If you have missed our reporting on ALEC, please Learn about ALEC. The group is behind anti-climate change laws,, union-busting measure, laws that repeal the minimum wage, privatizing public lands, and much more.
Included under the "economic" umbrella which ALEC says it will continue to pursue would be repealing the minimum wage, reducing sick days, privatizing the Postal Service (which would eliminating another union), and any legislation that would address climate change and promote renewable energy.
Here is ALEC's statement: