Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton (D) specifically called out the American Legislative Exchange Council in a recent speech, taking on one of the key operatives on the right wing in a way that few other Democrats have done in recent years, despite ALEC's rising power in state legislatures across the country. ALEC has repeatedly attempted to push pro-corporate, anti-working family legislation in numerous states and has managed to largely fly under the radar in the media and with the public. The more high profile politicians like Dayton call them out, the more pressure the organization will face from working families and their allies.
Minnesota’s Governor, Mark Dayton, is doing a really good job. As we have reported in the past months, he is trying to stimulate the state’s economy via expanded infrastructure and local hire and he has vowed to fight the newly radicalized Minnesota GOP by reaching across the aisle for bipartisan support. But what is going to really get progressive panties in a bunch is Dayton’s latest move: calling out the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) by name.
Referring to four now-vetoed tort reform laws as “partisan political ploys,” Dayton told the press that, “The real impact would be to reduce the rights of law abiding citizens and businesses to seek justice from the wrongdoing of others.” At one point during his remarks (video below), he held up the ALEC manual that the tort reform laws came from:
“So exactly who did the Republicans in the legislature listen to?” Dayton asked, as he held up a thick document.
“Three of the four bills come right from this manual. Tort Reform Boot Camp, published by the American Legislative exchange council, or ALEC.”
The organization often holds seminars for conservative state legislators across the nation, and provides model legislation that reflects a public policy agenda.
“It is an extremely conservative group funded largely by large corporations, big business associations, insurance companies and very wealthy individuals,” Dayton remarked…
“I’ve found that Minnesotans do not want their laws written by the lobbyists of big corporations.”