The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) is hosting its “States and Nation Policy Summit” in Washington, DC this week. The organization – which brings together legislators, the private sector, and the public to advance federalism, free-market principles, and individual liberty – has been under attack from left-wing organizations and the media.
The Heartland Institute, a member of ALEC, has come under similar attacks in recent years – notably the 2012 theft of its budget documents and creation of a fake “strategy memo” that distorted Heartland’s work in the climate science debate. The Guardian newspaper this week published an “expose” based on “leaked” internal ALEC documents. The left-wing Americans United for Change hosted a conference call with three members of Congress to denounce ALEC and encourage donors to abandon the organization.
The following statement from Joseph Bast, president of The Heartland Institute – a free-market think tank – may be used for attribution. For more comments, refer to the contact information below. To book a Heartland guest on your program, please contact Director of Communications Jim Lakely at firstname.lastname@example.org and 312/377-4000 or (cell) 312/731-9364.
“Having been through such an attack ourselves, we stand with our colleagues at the American Legislative Exchange Council and express our dismay that they are being put through this experience. This effort is obviously aimed at alienating donors to conservative and libertarian organizations, and we hope those donors won’t fall for the bait. These are Alinsky-style tactics: Demonize, distract, and refuse to engage your opponents on what really matters. It has nothing to do with ALEC’s stance on public policy issues. These attacks are leveled by people who refuse to engage in civil debate, and they should not be allowed to win the day.”
The Heartland Institute is a 29-year-old national nonprofit organization headquartered in Chicago, Illinois. Its mission is to discover, develop, and promote free-market solutions to social and economic problems. For more information, visit our Web site or call 312/377-4000.