Companies Continue to quit ALEC over group’s contoversial lobbying

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  • Dale Eisman

In response to a statement from ALEC on its dwindling corporate membership, Common Cause released the following statement:

It’s no surprise that ALEC would call the free exercise of democracy an “intimidation campaign.” Of course ALEC would rather Americans remain in the dark about their efforts to limit voting rights, undermine our public schools, assault collective bargaining, weaken laws protecting our environment, and spread dangerous legislation like the Stand Your Ground law being cited to justify the killing of Trayvon Martin.

The truth is that many Americans find ALEC’s secretive efforts to push public policy for the economic and partisan interests of its corporate sponsors both undemocratic and unsavory. That’s why companies like Coca Cola, Pepsi, Intuit, Kraft and McDonalds are exercising their free market right to pull out. Good corporate managers know that attaching their brand to radical and divisive legislation is not in the best interest of their shareholders, and Common Cause applauds their leadership.

“Sunlight is the best disinfectant, and we will continue to educate the public about ALEC’s agenda, and highlight the influence of corporate money in our state laws and public policies,” said Bob Edgar, president of Common Cause.

In the last week, Coca-Cola, Kraft Foods, PepsiCo, Intuit, and now McDonald’s all confirmed they’ve withdrawn from ALEC. On Monday, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation announced that they will no longer be making grants to ALEC.

Yesterday a coalition of civil rights and government watchdog groups with members in all 50 states elevated the ongoing campaign to pressure corporations to withdraw from ALEC. Common Cause, Color of Change, People for the American Way, Progress Now, the Center for Media and Democracy, and CREDO said their members will be petitioning State Farm Insurance and Johnson & Johnson, both of which play a prominent leadership role in ALEC, to leave the organization immediately.