Moyers & Company "United States of ALEC"

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Last week's Moyers & Company featured "United States of ALEC", an unprecedented in-depth television report on the influential ALEC, the American Legislative Exchange Council. You can catch it again Friday, October 5 at 11pm on WDSE•WRPT PBS North 8.1│31.1.

Using interviews, documents, and personal accounts, the episode explores ALEC's machine at work, acting in a way one Wisconsin politician describes as "a corporate dating service for lonely legislators and corporate special interests." In state houses around the country, hundreds of pieces of boilerplate ALEC legislation are proposed or enacted without the public ever knowing who's behind it.

"All of us here are very familiar with ALEC and the influence that ALEC has with many of the [legislative] members," said Arizona State Senator Steve Farley. "Corporations have the right to present their arguments, but they don't have the right to do it secretly."

"United States of ALEC" is a collaboration between Okapi Productions (the filmmakers Tom Casciato and Kathleen Hughes) and the Schumann Media Center, headed by Bill Moyers, which supports independent journalism, and public watchdogs such as the Center for Media and Democracy, whose investigators are featured in the report. Also appearing on the Moyers & Company broadcast is Kathleen Hall Jamieson, the director of the University of Pennsylvania's Annenberg Public Policy Center and founder of FactCheck.org, who talks about deception and truth in the 2012 campaign.