Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Minnesota Independent: 30 Minnesota legislators are ALEC members

'If you’re believing in socialism,' group is not for you, says group's state chair

Source: The Minnesota Independent
By Jon Collins | 08.05.11 | 6:30 am
“About 30″ Minnesota legislators are members of a controversial nonprofit that critics say allows corporate members to lobby lawmakers and write bills without disclosure, according to the group’s state chair.

The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) includes around 2,000 legislative members nationwide. It’s sometimes viewed as secretive because it does not disclose its membership, although leaked ALEC files have provided a partial picture of some Minnesota lawmakers that are involved (see chart below), and the Minnesota Independent is attempting to confirm lawmakers’ involvement with the group.

ALEC’s Minnesota chair, state Rep. Mary Kiffmeyer, hasn’t yet responded to a Minnesota Independent request to release members’ names. The Big Lake Republican, who is currently attending the ALEC conference in New Orleans, told the Minnesota Independent Thursday that all 30 Minnesota members are Republicans. She said she invited Democrats to join the organization, which she describes as “Jeffersonian,” but none took her up on it.

“If you’re believing in socialism and want more government control and don’t want limited government, you might not be so interested in ALEC,” Kiffmeyer said. “So we understand that some Democrats like [Sen.] Linda Berglin might not have found this an agreeable organization to pay with her money, or her campaign money, because she doesn’t see the world in Jeffersonian principals.”
Read more (includes a list of MN GOP who are ALEC members)...