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What You Should Know About ALEC (that ALEC Doesn't Want You to Know)

Updated on October 16, 2016

Who is ALEC, and What Do They Really Stand For?

Who is ALEC and What Do They Claim to Do?

ALEC, also known as the American Legislative Exchange Council, is the nation’s largest non-partisan, individual public-private membership association of state legislators (at least, that is what they claim to be on their website, but we will get to that later).

Founded almost five decades ago in Chicago, a small group of nonpartisan lawmakers got together aimed at creating a smaller, more limited government, promoting a free market, and making a shift towards a federalist state.

Even today, those affiliated with ALEC claim that they are representing the minority, attempting to make a better United States. Each year, nearly 1,000 bills are introduced that are at least somewhat based on ALEC Model Legislation. An average of 20 percent of these bills eventually become law.

What started out as a small group of lawmakers unhappy with the system has now turned into more than 2,000 individuals from the Senate, the House, and some of the country's largest corporations, including Bayer, Johnson & Johnson, Walmart, Coca-Cola, Intuit and Exxon.

ALEC Claims to Work for the People When in Reality they Side with Big Corporations

The Realities of ALEC's Initiative - Money, Greed, Power

ALEC has been shaping our government, our laws, our politicians and more for decades. State-based legislators have developed ties that are far too close knit with what was supposed to be a nonpartisan not-for-profit designed to encourage a free market.

The pockets of the organization have become so fat with donations from some of the United States most successful companies, that ALEC has gained the ability to buy the laws they want, and buy the rights to turn down the laws they dislike.

By focusing on state legislation, rather than federal law, ALEC is able to fly under most peoples' radar while taking advantage of the trust of the citizens. ALEC's large bankroll and litany of high-powered members allows the group to veto proposals and ideas that aren't to their liking. ALEC has also been known to propose measures that are quickly turned into model bills that create consistent messages across the country.

Even if I Tried, I Couldn't Summarize ALEC Like John Oliver

Were you aware of ALEC and the power they hold over the American people?

See results

Eye-Opening Facts About ALEC

Companies with Ties to ALEC:

  • The Koch Brothers Industries
  • AT&T
  • The Altria Group
  • Exxon
  • Shell
  • Mobile
  • Kraft Foods
  • PhRMA
  • Bayer
  • State Farm
  • The United States Postal Service
  • American Express
  • AstraZeneca
  • Walmart
  • and the list goes on...

Notable Members of ALEC:

  • William Carmichael, national chair of the American Bail Corporation
  • Daniel Smith, board member at Altria
  • Cynthia Bergman, executive at Exxon
  • Mike Morgan, head of Koch Companies Private Sector
  • Steve Seele, chairmain of SAP America
  • Don Bohn, VP at Johnson and Johnson
  • Derek Crawford, VP at Kraft
  • Gene Rackley, Director of Public Affairs at Coca-Cola
  • and again, the list goes on...

ALEC is a Money Hungry Powerhouse That Doesn't Care About the People

ALEC 2014: Headlines You Won't Believe

The original founders of ALEC probably never would have had that first meeting if they could predict where the organization would be today.

Here is a list of headlines that expose the true motives of ALEC, and are excellent portrayals of why this group must be stopped:

  • ALEC Lashes Out at Google for "lies" Regarding Climate Change
  • Google Cuts Ties with ALEC Over Disagreements Over the Groups Intentions, Exxon, Shell and Mobile Stay Put
  • Toronto Star Derails Attempts by ALEC to Deny Climate Change
  • While Tech Companies Like Google and Microsoft Drop ALEC, Kock Brothers Industry, Big Tobacco and PhRMA Remain
  • ALEC Agenda in Dallas: Eviscaration of Medicaid, School Privatization and Expansion of Gas Exports
  • ALEC Politicians Caught Plagiarizing Draft of Bill
  • Pesticide and GMO Companies Back ALEC with Record Breaking Contributions
  • ALEC Drafts a Bill for the House Called "Stand Your Ground" - Bill Passes Into Law
  • ALEC Tampers with Wisconsin Constitution

What was meant to be about lessening the power of the government, reducing the size of the government, promoting a free market and working towards equal distribution of power has now become a massive entity in our government driven by power, money and greed.

Are We Allowing the Country to Become the United States of ALEC?

About ALEC Exposed

ALEC exposed was created by the CMD (Center for Media Democracy), a group that accepts no outside contributions, and is fueled by its desire to educate an unaware public.

Unlike ALEC, the CMD provides all information pertaining to the organization to any member of the public who is interested. They don't make deals behind closed doors that benefit the few, but rather work on a low budget relentlessly attempting to expose the corruption and greed that has fueled ALEC to this day.

Through their website,, the CMD provides a litany of evidence of corporate misconduct and misuse of government authority on the part of ALEC and its members.

What ALEC has been doing is against the law, it violates the rights of us citizens, and it makes an already unever playing field that much more uneven. It is time we all open our eyes to the corruption going on between our government, our lawmakers, and the corporate powers that have a hand in ALEC's pocket.

The influence corporations and money have on our political system has gotten out of hand. By bringing more and more attention to issues like ALEC, we are making it harder and harder for them to remain so descrete. Don't turn a blind eye on your future, your children's future, and our country's future. Expose ALEC today.

Will We Continue to Let Groups Like ALEC Corrupt Our Government?

© 2014 Kathleen Odenthal


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    • lovemychris profile image

      Leslie McCowen 

      6 years ago from Cape Cod, USA

      yeah,I believe you sassy, since you have shown yourself to be so non-partisan......snark. And please tell me what fines Soros has paid for polluting.TY

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      lol yes that's probably true kathleen. would wind up being monster sized.

    • Kathleen Odenthal profile imageAUTHOR

      Kathleen Odenthal 

      6 years ago from Bridgewater

      that doesn't sound like a hub, that sounds like a book.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      If I was going to write a Hub about Soros, it wouldn't be solely about Soros but include the Koch brothers since they are the same people who support different parties in the same manner. If I were going to write about super pacs, I would not only pick on ALEC but do them all regardless of party because they are one and the same except for which candidates they spend their money on. Which was the point. :)

    • lovemychris profile image

      Leslie McCowen 

      6 years ago from Cape Cod, USA

      I'm sure there are plenty of hubs about Soros....I KNOW there are TONS of them about rotten, evil democrats....especially the president. When does he reveal he's the anti-Christ(questionmark) Maybe someone should visit these hubs and tell them to write about Romney--cause it's not fair to only write nasty about Obama. Say, here's a thought: Why don't YOU write a hub about Soros--then we can visit it and ask where's your hub about ALEC!

      what they do:

      "corporations VOTING to rewrite our laws"

      The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) describes itself as the largest “membership association of state legislators,” but over 90% of its revenue comes from sources other than legislative dues, primarily from corporations and corporate foundations. After the 2010 congressional midterm elections, ALEC boasted that “among those who won their elections, three of the four former state legislators newly-elected to the U.S. Senate are ALEC Alumni and 27 of the 42 former state legislators newly-elected to the U.S. House are ALEC Alumni.”

      we see what has happened since 2010, do we not. Subversion of Democracy.

    • brakel2 profile image

      Audrey Selig 

      6 years ago from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

      Hi Kathleen - How strange to start a group with narrow intentions and then change it when money sits on the table. This group sounds like so many - saying one thing and meaning another. ALEC sounds dangerous to me. Thanks for explaining the real intentions of this group. Great hub. Blessings, Audrey

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      @kathleen Money will always be a part of politics because it takes money to get your voice out, even if it is an honest voice. I have no issue with super pacs because I've not yet met one that wasn't pretty clear on their agenda, regardless of which Party's candidates they support. I know that people don't like the non-disclosure part of them, and I can understand that issue, but to me, anyone should be able to support whoever they like in campaigns and spend their money however they like. I'm sure if you were rich, you'd throw money behind candidates you believed in, as would I and anyone else. Once upon a time our elected officials were everyday people from the neighborhoods they represented. It would be great if that were the case today, but I don't think that is ever coming back. The sheer cost of media and the need for it in today's political world makes it pretty tough on any level outside of a local one.

      If I'd only seen this one Hub, I would not have been so sassy, but I saw the other one on Citizen's United and just wondered if the super pacs from the other side would get the same scrutiny. Looking forward to them.

      Thank you for allowing other voices to be heard on your Hub. I've seen too much censoring of any dissenting voice around here lately and I do appreciate you being open.

    • FitnezzJim profile image


      6 years ago from Fredericksburg, Virginia

      Before reading this article I had never heard of ALEC, and had no clue what they have done.

      After reading thins article, I can honestly say I have heard of ALEC, but, I still have no clue what they have done.

    • Kathleen Odenthal profile imageAUTHOR

      Kathleen Odenthal 

      6 years ago from Bridgewater

      While, you certainly are sassy. I am not a democrat, and I do plan on doing many exposes as a matter of fact. I don't believe that money has any place in politics, and am not writing this from a democratic standpoint. I am not sure why you have such an attitude but thank you for your education on Super PAcs.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      so are you going to do an expose on Soros? And on the "other" super pacs?

      "The Democrats' edge in TV ads of late is due partly to a string of super PACs that have ramped up their efforts in the past two months. Since July 3, the largest super PACs aligned with Democrats have raised four times the money of pro-GOP super PACs, and have now spent $60 million to Republicans' $38 million, data compiled by The Wall Street Journal shows."

      Just curious or are super pacs okay as long as they hold your personal beliefs?

    • suzettenaples profile image

      Suzette Walker 

      6 years ago from Taos, NM

      Great hub and thank you for informing us about this corporate lobby. I had not heard of it until reading your hub. It is sad to see that all it takes is corporations and money to affect our government no matter what government level they work on. Thanks for bringing ALEC to our attention. Voted up+ and shared.

    • lovemychris profile image

      Leslie McCowen 

      6 years ago from Cape Cod, USA

      "Reagan and his cabinet created ALEC during his first term in 1981" all goes back to Reagan. What gets me is the disdain in which they hold other people, and the absolute not-caring if people get hurt or die.

      This is how far our country has fallen since they killed Kennedy. We have witnessed the subversion of America.

    • Kathleen Odenthal profile imageAUTHOR

      Kathleen Odenthal 

      6 years ago from Bridgewater

      no that comment was for the person who was defending ALEC, sorry if it was misconstrued.

    • Mel Carriere profile image

      Mel Carriere 

      6 years ago from Snowbound and down in Northern Colorado

      Was that comment intended for me? I agree with everything you said in here, and so does that hub. I don't wish for you to fear me. I thought we were on the same page.

    • Kathleen Odenthal profile imageAUTHOR

      Kathleen Odenthal 

      6 years ago from Bridgewater

      I disagree with you, but don't fear you. That is likely due to your gross factual inaccuracies.

    • fpherj48 profile image


      6 years ago from Carson City

      Did not know all of this! I must thank you, KO....this is a must-read for every American. Now.

      You have done a superb job! I'm sharing this every where!

    • Mel Carriere profile image

      Mel Carriere 

      6 years ago from Snowbound and down in Northern Colorado

      Curiously enough, that's my hub up there above the comments section. I guess Hub Pages doesn't have a large sampling of ALEC related hubs, and I suppose one of the insidious things about this organization is that they manage to write our laws without too many people realizing that they exist. If Americans really think certain politicians really work for their best interests and follow the will of the people, all they have to do is look at who is pulling the puppet strings. Great hub!

    • lions44 profile image

      CJ Kelly 

      6 years ago from the PNW

      There is nothing to "fear" from this group. Those companies give to the Dems as well. By the way, the "evil" Koch brothers were lauded this week by Eric Holder for their donations to the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. Hardly a right-leaning organization. The Kochs also keep a lot of hospitals in business. Just because you disagree with someone doesn't mean you have to "fear" them.

    • ecogranny profile image

      Kathryn Grace 

      6 years ago from San Francisco

      I published on Squidoo for years, always hoping eventually to see more socially responsible articles and commentary there. Why didn't I find HubPages sooner? So glad to see articles like this. Thank you for exposing ALEC to audiences who might never have known it existed, let alone the havoc it is wreaking on our political system and, ultimately, our freedom and our lives.

    • junko profile image


      6 years ago


    • peoplepower73 profile image

      Mike Russo 

      6 years ago from Placentia California

      Reagan and his cabinet created ALEC during his first term in 1981 to decentralize the federal government and give more legislative control to the states and corporations. I was going to write a hub about ALEC, but I think you have done a great job. They are like the Wizard of Oz behind the curtain and they need to be unveiled. Voting up, useful and sharing..

    • JayeWisdom profile image

      Jaye Denman 

      6 years ago from Deep South, USA

      Incredibly important hub, Kathleen! Why is it that a thoroughly researched and presented hub with information CRITICAL to an entire country isn't voted Hub of the Day? Well, it's HOTD in my book! And I'm sharing it, too. I hope everyone who reads it passes it along and that you pitch it to the big print publications to reach a broader audience. Every American should be aware of the reach ALEC, Monsanto and greedy corporate CEOs (and wealthy stockholders) have into the U.S. government and lawmaking!

      Voted Up+++ and shared


    • FlourishAnyway profile image


      6 years ago from USA

      Great hub! Keep doing smart hubs like this to keep people informed. Voted up and sharing.

    • someonewhoknows profile image


      6 years ago from south and west of canada,north of ohio

      Smart - ALEC pun Intended!

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 

      6 years ago from Central Florida

      Scream and shout at the top of your lungs, Kathleen. I swear, money really is the root of all evil. I wish we'd go back to the barter system, but I know that's not realistic; we're too far gone.

      I'm going to go back now and watch the two videos you include in this post.

      Great job, my friend!

    • profile image

      Howard Schneider 

      6 years ago from Parsippany, New Jersey

      Excellent Hub, Kathleen. The Koch Brothers funded the creation of this organization to implement their selfish policies. They and their corporate compatriots have bought the Republican party.

    • Venkatachari M profile image

      Venkatachari M 

      6 years ago from Hyderabad, India

      Very interesting information about ALEC. You have done a great job by revealing facts. People should stop promoting their products and business.

      Thanks for sharing. Voted up and interesting.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      6 years ago from The Caribbean

      Two rhetorical questions: (1) How come so many organizations which begin with good intentions are seduced into changing course when someone waves dollar bills before them? (2) How is it that these organizations are allowed to grow as if they are accountable to no one?

      Thanks for the information and exposure on this group. Voted Up!


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