These media sources are moderate to strongly biased toward conservative causes through story selection and/or political affiliation. They may utilize strong loaded words (wording that attempts to influence an audience by appealing to emotion or stereotypes), publish misleading reports, and omit information that may damage conservative causes. Some sources in this category may be untrustworthy. See all Right Bias sources.
- Overall, we rate ALEC as right-biased based on political affiliation and reporting that consistently favors the right. We also rate them Mixed for factual reporting due to not aligning with the scientific consensus on environmental issues.
Bias Rating: RIGHT
Factual Reporting: MIXED
MBFC’s Country Freedom Rating: MOSTLY FREE
Media Type: Organization/Foundation
Traffic/Popularity: Minimal Traffic
MBFC Credibility Rating: MEDIUM CREDIBILITY
The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) was founded in 1973 by Heritage Foundation co-founder and first president, religious conservative activists Paul Weyrich, Lou Barnett, and then Republican Illinois Congressman Henry Hyde. Their staff consists primarily of Republican politicians, state lawmakers, and corporate representatives. On their about page, they describe themselves as “America’s largest nonpartisan, voluntary membership organization of state legislators dedicated to the principles of limited government, free markets, and federalism.” Further, according to their membership page, ALEC has 2000 members. Stuart Adams is the Senator for the Utah State Senate’s 22nd District; he is also currently serving as the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) chairman.
Funded by / Ownership
The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that conducts lobbying for corporations. According to Brookings, “One feature that separates ALEC from other lobbying ventures is that it partners with corporations whose interests span the space of conservative issues.” Donations are the primary source of revenue. More on revenue can be found here. There is also a database of ALEC-Related Contributions that almost exclusively goes to Republican candidates.
According to a betterutah.org article titled “Utah’s conflict of interest problem,” ALEC Chairman of the board Stuart Adams “never mentioned his involvement with ALEC on his mandatory conflict of interest disclosure for 2021.”
ALEC offers social networking for conservative Republican elected officials under their annual meeting events. They are also known for writing “model bills” that are criticized for how these ready template bills are “advancing the agenda of the people who write them.” These model bills typically reflect a conservative agenda. For example, a publication called “The State Legislators Guide to Repealing ObamaCare.”
ALEC has also been criticized for promoting “stand your ground” gun laws, as they also drafted the model for many ”Stand Your Ground” laws, such as the Florida law involved in the death of teenager Trayvon Martin. Finally, ALEC promotes and is involved in voter suppression legislation.
In review, ALEC publishes articles such as “The Paris Climate Agreement is a Bad Deal for America,” utilizing the BBC and The Guardian as sources. According to ucsusa.org, Exxon Mobil funded the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) over 20 years, and as of 2018, they broke with ALEC due to public pressure over the group’s climate change denial. ALEC also republishes Daily Signal articles such as “How States Can Shape Obamacare’s Replacement.” When reporting on politicians, they generally have a favorable opinion of Republicans, including former President Trump. However, they frequently report negatively on Democrats, such as this President Biden’s Infrastructure Plan Brings Suspect Benefits at High Costs.
In general, the primary agenda of ALEC is writing/supporting bills that undermine environmental regulations and deny climate change. They also promote the interests of businesses/corporations and promote the politicians who support them.
Failed Fact Checks
- None in the last 5 years
Overall, we rate ALEC as right-biased based on political affiliation and reporting that consistently favors the right. We also rate them Mixed for factual reporting due to not aligning with the scientific consensus on environmental issues. (8/2/2017) Updated (M. Huitsing 10/29/2023)
Last Updated on October 29, 2023 by Media Bias Fact Check
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