ALEC resurfaces with local angle
New city and county focus by bill mill raises more questions about corporate influence in Orange County government
Published: March 12, 2014
JUST THE STATS
NUMBER OF STATE LEGISLATORS WHO HAVE APPARENTLY REMOVED THEMSELVES FROM THE ROSTER OF CONSERVATIVE BILL-MILL THE AMERICAN LEGISLATIVE EXCHANGE COUNCIL OVER THE LAST TWO YEARS; 60 CORPORATIONS HAVE LIKEWISE SEVERED TIES
INCOME DEFICIT IN ALEC DUES AS OF JUNE 30, 2013, MORE THAN ONE-THIRD OF THE TOTAL INCOME OF $3.9 MILLION, LARGELY AS A RESULT OF CONTROVERSY BEHIND ALEC’S “STAND YOUR GROUND” MODEL LEGISLATION AND THE RESULTING TRAYVON MARTIN CONTROVERSY
NUMBER OF ELECTED LOCAL OFFICIALS IN MUNICIPALITIES CURRENTLY BEING TARGETED BY ALEC’S NEW LOCAL GOVERNMENT WING, THE AMERICAN CITY COUNTY EXCHANGE
“AS A GROUP THAT FOCUSES ON LIMITED GOVERNMENT, FREE MARKETS AND FEDERALISM, WE BELIEVE OUR MESSAGE RINGS TRUE AT THE MUNICIPAL LEVEL JUST AS IT DOES IN STATE LEGISLATURES.”
– ALEC SPOKESMAN WILHELM MEIERLING
Source: The Guardian
Given the past few years of municipal sweater-unraveling and general opaqueness in both policy and attitude in Orange County – OMG, text messages make government happen, you guys! – it should come as no surprise that we don’t throw too much weight behind the notion of political coincidences locally. This is Happytown™, not happenstance, after all. We just like it when things make sense.
But nothing, presently, does make sense at the Orange County Board of County Commissioners. Seriously, nothing has made sense there since Sept. 11, 2012, the dawn of textgate, but following Commissioner Fred Brummer’s recent omnibus attack on democracy – about which we frothed at length last week – things have seemingly stepped into the Twilight Zone. By now, you should be aware that Brummer – or whomever is dropping bits of cheese into his cage – is seeking to rush through a special election in May that would appear to appease a litigious Hispanic population while simultaneously wrecking everything in the background. In essence, Brummer wants to strip everything Democratic (and democratic) from the local government process while telling everyone that it’s in their best interest. Interesting, considering that Brummer is a termed-out Republican who seems ripe for the lobbyist picking (or a particularly robust gin blossom, your pick).
So maybe it’s not a coincidence that just last week we also learned that Koch-snorting legislative bullies the American Legislative Exchange Council – speed-dating your elected state legislators with powerful corporate entities behind closed doors since 1973 – had launched a new initiative aimed at rebuilding some of their credibility following some bad press involving a certain Sanford shooting and associations with an ALEC model-bill.
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