The eve of the Republican convention was a bad day for ALEC as five more national and global corporate members of the American Legislative Exchange Council have cut ties with the group.
General Electric, The Western Union Company, Sprint Nextel Corporation, Symantec Corporation, and Reckitt Benckiser Group all told ColorofChange that they have cut ties with the right wing policy group. GE said that they left ALEC, “in connection with our ongoing review of the political and policy organizations we belong to.”
Sprint had previously decried the boycott as “corporate intimidation and bullying,” but today announced that they were not renewing their membership in ALEC. GE, Sprint, and Western Union had all been targeted by the ColorofChange boycott. The three corporate giants were joined by Symantec Corporation and Reckitt Benckiser Group in also dropping the formerly secretive right wing policy making and bill writing organization.
ColorOfChange.org Executive Director Rashad Robinson said, “These significant developments, coupled with recent withdrawals from ALEC by companies like Walgreens and GM, further prove that everyday people working together to hold corporations accountable can achieve tremendous change. ColorOfChange celebrates these corporations who have withdrawn their funding from ALEC, which continues to defend its push to enact discriminatory voter ID laws across the nation.”
In total, 38 companies have dropped ALEC since the boycott began including, General Motors, Walgreens, CVSCaremark, Best Buy, MillerCoors, John Deere, Hewlett-Packard, Dell, Johnson & Johnson, Wal-Mart, Amazon, Procter & Gamble, Yum! Brands, McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Mars Inc., Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, Kraft Foods, Intuit, Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, Reed Elsevier, Kaplan, Scantron, Medtronic, American Traffic Solutions, Arizona Public Service, Express Scripts/Medco, EnergySolutions, and Connections Education.
The left has been able to be successful with their boycotts because they have something the right doesn’t. Dedication. Have you stopped by a Chic-fil-A lately? If you did, you would have noticed that the long lines that were there when the right was pushing back are gone now.
Yeah, the Fox News led campaign to support Chic-fil-A lasted for about two days.
The thing about boycotts is that they only work if the boycotters are committed and stick with them. Progressive and liberal activists have learned that sponsor and advertiser boycotts work.
ALEC has lost their ability to work behind closed doors and in the shadows. Rush Limbaugh lost millions of dollars and continues to lose advertisers, and Glenn Beck lost his last bit of relevancy when he vanished from Fox News.
Boycotts are about holding people and organizations accountable for their actions. ALEC has more than been held accountable. Their name has become toxic, and those who dare join them know that there will be a high price to pay both in terms of profits and public image for their decision.
The worst news for ALEC isn’t that the boycott is working, but that the boycott will not be ending anytime soon.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association