ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council) in recent years have come under fire for corruption and unfairness towards the treatment of every day citizens. A non-profit org that was created with the goal of preventing abuse of federal governments, corporations and other large enterprise from exploiting the everyday citizens have ironically been demonized for not standing up to their motto. With Occupy protests that sprang up like wildfire, protests against ALEC has been numerous just in the past 5 years.
We look at on the three most recent protests against ALEC, often organized by Occupy Movement, and discuss how they transpired and what the protests were about.
The first time that ALEC has been targeted for demonstration for its corruption was in October 2011. In Cincinnati, a controversial bill (Wisconson Senate Bill 11) lobbied, paid and pushed by ALEC incited a large protest against the questionable legislation. For 10 days, streets of the city of Cincinnati were filled with angry protesters exposing the corrupt nature of ALEC and how they act as a shadow government to accomplish things for the select greedy few.
In 2013, Chicago also caught the wave of protesting against ALEC during its 40th annual convention. A team of protesters representing different special interests like environments and local communities came together to protest against ALEC. Protesters alleged fraudulent and corrupt behaviors of ALEC by citing various offenses they’ve launched on voter rights, environment pollution and other labor agenda. Again like in 2011, protesters were accusing ALEC of upholding the rights of the corporations over the interests of regular citizens.
In March of 2015, there was another explosion of protests against ALEC in San Diego. This time, the focus was on disenfranchisement of the voters. ALEC has long been accused of voter fraud and manipulation and NY Times columnist Paul Krugman had this to say about ALEC:
“ALEC…its legislative templates aren’t just about generating immediate benefits to the organization’s corporate sposors; they’re about creating a political climate that will favor even more corporation-friendly legislation in the future.”
The quote encapsulates why the protesters are so enraged against this conservative, partisan entity disguised as a benign non-profit.
On May 6, 2016, the protesters have congregated in Pittsburgh, with them surrounding and storming a private meeting held at Omni William Penn Hotel. The activities comprised of dozens of organizations that represent labor unions and other liberal leaning organizations. The consensus amongst the protesters was with ALEC pushing agendas that undermine the labor unions, favoring the corporate overlords they are sponsored by.