The ALEC Empire is striking back. Check out this:
A PhRMA vice president, Matthew Bennett, rejected the criticism of his organization. “Our work with ALEC, as with all organizations that we work with, is confined to the health and health-industry issues that are of concern to our companies,” he said. In terms of PhRMA’s ongoing support of ALEC, Bennett said that “we regularly and constantly evaluate our relationships with all the organizations we support to be sure they continue to align with our mission.”
The protests against companies, with the accompanying threat of boycott, are exactly why corporate donations should remain anonymous, said Bradley Smith, a Republican who formerly chaired the Federal Election Commission and founded the Center for Competitive Politics. He said that the protests launched against ALEC donors may be an act of free speech but that they chill debate.
“This is aimed at cutting off support for ideas rather than combating the ideas themselves,” Smith said.
That argument was echoed in a statement from the Chamber of Commerce, saying activists’ pressure to disclose was a thinly veiled effort to “harass and intimidate the business community. That’s exactly what’s going on in the ALEC protests.”
RICHMOND — Virginia House Speaker William J. Howell (R-Stafford) on Thursday strongly defended a national conservative organization he used to lead, arguing that it has become a victim of intimidation and extortion.
Howell said the American Legislative Exchange Council, a group that has lost some of its corporate members in the past week, has been subjected to a six-month attack by liberal groups, including the Occupy movement, Moveon.org and billionaire George Soros.
Awwww. Did you call for a waaambulance, Thurston?
They really don’t like having a million-watt klieg light shone on their activities, do they? Because really, that’s all that Color of Change and its fellow ALEC exposers have been doing. The thing is that ALEC’s goals are so unsavory, and so anti-people, that very few people or businesses want to be publicly linked to ALEC now.
Keep it up, everyone. Keep it up. The more mainstream businesses that leave ALEC, the higher the concentration of those businesses known to be run by right-wing activists, such as Koch Industries, and the harder it is for ALEC to pretend that they aren’t a right-wing outfit.