The American Legislative Exchange Council, ALEC, was founded in 1973 by Paul Weyrich, the man who coined the phrase, “Moral Majority”, and, with Jerry Falwell, embarked upon a homophobic crusade, hearkening to the time of Joe McCarthy. This is no coincidence, since the monies used for ALEC’s founding came largely from the coffers of Charles and David Koch, sons of Fred C. Koch. Robert Welch and Fred Koch were principal founders of the John Birch Society, which still extols McCarthyism as an heroic American value.
ALEC’s mission statement declares it exists to “advance principles of free markets, limited government, federalism, and individual liberty, through a nonpartisan public-private partnership of America’s state legislators, members of the private sector, the federal government, and general public.” Remembering history, Benito Mussolini also sought a “public-private partnership” of “legislators…the federal government, (and) members of the private sector”. He called this fascism.
The Arizona Association for Economic Development was founded, a year later, in 1974, “by a small group of economic development professionals and business leaders dedicated to expanding the industrial and economic base of Arizona. This group came together to discuss issues affecting Arizona’s economic development, to promote economic development in the State of Arizona through an interchange of information and educational opportunities among its members, to act as a liaison with outside groups having the same objectives, to influence legislation affecting economic development and to continually improve working relationships among its diverse membership”, according to its webpage. The similarities in objectives, between ALEC and the Arizona Association for Economic Development are striking. One is compelled to question whether the Arizona group might be an offshoot of ALEC.
TRIADVOCATES LLC is a significant member of the Arizona Association for Economic Development. TRIADVOCATES provides integrated local, state and federal lobbying, and government relations consulting services throughout Arizona. Its principal member is Kimberly Knox.
The Policy Development Group, also an Arizona lobbyist, is a product of Ron Ober, who ran successful campaigns for retired US Senator Dennis DeConcini, of the ‘Keating Five’ scandal fame. DeConcini’s current interest is involvement in the Corrections Corporation of America, the notorious private prison system, where he sits on the board of directors for a sum of $175,000.00 per year. CCA is an ALEC member corporation.
Sal Baldenegro has stated that Sen. DeConcini has urged potential donors to the election campaign of Wenona Benally Baldenegro to walk away and provide her with no monies, which would impair her chances of being elected to the US House of Representatives.
Senator DeConcini, Ron Ober, and Kimberly Knox are listed as official donors to the campaign of former US Representative Ann Kirkpatrick. Other donors include Richard Harris Silverman, General Manager of Salt River Project, Judith Williams, President of SRP, Gena P. Trimble, Manager, SRP, Mark B. Bonsall, Executive Management, SRP, Jane Alfano Rasor, attorney, SRP, and John F. Sullivan, Associate General Manager, SRP. Salt River Project is an ALEC member corporation. Ms. Kirkpatrick’s donors also include a Washington D.C. lobbying firm, Wexler and Walker Public Policy Associates, a division of Hill & Knowlton, one of the oldest public relations firms in the United States. Hill & Knowlton designed the tobacco industry‘s strategy for counteracting scientific evidence which linked cigarette smoking to lung cancer. Wexler and Walker Public Policy Associates were founded by Anne Wexler, 1981. Wexler has been listed as one of the most powerful women in the Washington, D.C. by The Washingtonian. Wexler is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Former Representative Ann Kirkpatrick voted NO on HR 1256, the FDA Oversight of Tobacco Products, aiding and abetting Big Tobacco. Her connections to destructive mining practices are even more insidious. Freeport McMoRan Copper and Gold, headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona, is an ALEC member corporation. Resolution Copper is connected to Freeport McMoRan, through a web of partnerships. Resolution Copper currently threatens to establish the world’s largest copper mine on sacred Apache land. Ann Kirkpatrick, along with former US Representative Rick Renzi (R), Flagstaff, both endorsed measures to allow this venture to come to fruition.
An irrefutable pattern exists. Ms. Kirkpatrick has supported the destructive mining prospects of an ALEC corporation. She aided ALEC supported Big Tobacco, by voting against HR 1256, and has received financial support from senior employees of an ALEC member corporation and a CCA board member, himself with a past soiled by corruption. Her supporters include a wealthy and very influential Washington lobbying firm. If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and looks like a duck, it’s a duck.
Maplight.org /us-congress/contributions?s=1&office_party=all&election=all&politician=768&business_sector=Lawyers %26 Lobbyists&business_industry=Lobbyists&start=07%2F01%2F2009&end=06%2F30%2F2011
- Progressive Democrat Wenona Baldenegro May Be First Navaho Woman in Congress (beavercountyblue.org)
- Wal-Mart latest to quit conservative group (seattlepi.com)
- Arizona’s copper mining challenges (mining.com)
- Phoenix Occupiers March Downtown (myfoxphoenix.com)