News from Progress Michigan

Thursday, May 17, 2012
Contact: Jessica Tramontana,, (517) 974-6302

Online petition calls on GM to “do the right thing,” drop ALEC membership

LANSING – Today citizen’s group Progress Michigan launched an online petition calling on General Motors to drop its membership with the controversial American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). In recent weeks, corporations including Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Kraft, McDonald’s, and Procter & Gamble have all dropped their memberships with the corporate bill mill. Neither Ford nor Chrysler are current members of ALEC.

“It’s time for GM to do the right thing and cut ties with ALEC,” said Zack Pohl, Executive Director of Progress Michigan. “Every Michigander should be proud of GM’s dramatic turnaround. But that doesn’t mean GM workers, drivers and shareholders should be underwriting GM’s membership to a corporate-sponsored lobbying group like ALEC, which has pushed ‘Stand Your Ground’ gun laws and voter suppression legislation. It’s time for GM to drop its ALEC membership and focus on what it does best – building great cars and trucks.”

Progress Michigan’s online petition calling on GM to do the right thing and cut ties with ALEC can be signed here:

As members of ALEC, corporations and state politicians vote behind closed doors to write so-called “model bills,” which often directly benefit corporate special interests. In ALEC’s own words, corporations have a “VOICE and a VOTE in shaping policy.”

According to documents obtained by Common Cause, GM is a member of ALEC’s Commerce, Insurance, and Economic Development Task Force.

Last June, a GM lobbyist successfully passed an amendment to an ALEC model resolution on Franchise and Business Agreement Legislation. According to the Center for Public Integrity, ALEC’s Commerce, Insurance, and Economic Development Task Force recently adopted three anti-collective bargaining “model bills,” which were introduced by the conservative Mackinac Center for Public Policy.

Earlier this year, GM announced it would no longer fund the Heartland Institute, a controversial think tank which had attacked global warming as “junk science.” A GM spokesperson was quoted as saying, “Mr. Akerson said he’d look into it. And we’ve looked into it, and we’ve decided to discontinue it.” Progress Michigan is calling on GM to do the same by canceling its membership with ALEC immediately.


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