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After his initial contradictory statements on ALEC, Chris Christie and all of those with New Jersey ties have remained silent, organizations have been dropping their support left and right. First it was Coke and Pepsi, which was discussed in this video segment on the Ed show:
“ALEC covers numerous issues but our involvement has been strictly limited to discussions about economic growth and development, transportation and tax policy. We did not participate in meetings or conversations related to other issues. Our membership in ALEC expires this spring and for a number of reasons, including limited resources, we have made the decision not to renew.
“While [we] were a member of ALEC in 2011, we evaluate all professional memberships annually and made the business decision not to renew in 2012,” Ashlee Yingling, a McDonald’s spokeswoman, wrote in an email.
Jump below the fold for more: who on Team Christie still backs ALEC, Koch brothers as usual, how are ALEC drafted bills being pushed as potential New Jersey laws? and updates: Wendy’s makes an ALEC decision & Steve Oroho does too.
While that’s what they are saying publicly, the Huffington Post reports that McDonald’s actually said they were a member as recently as February 29th. But not everyone is running for the doors.
You may ask what corporate backers on Team Christie say they are staying with ALEC? Well what do you know, Christie’s friends the Koch brothers and they’re joined by Pfizer, who in staying still tried to distance themselves:
“We don’t agree with every position that ALEC has, but then, we don’t agree with every position that a lot of organizations that we work with. We participate because the legislators that are members of ALEC, they make decisions that affect our business on a daily basis, so we think it’s an important place to sit and listen, and to participate when we’re asked to participate about things that we know something about.
Which brings us back to the ties to team Christie, because that’s the reason that companies like Pfizer are sticking around and the Gates foundation say they were involved in the first place. The question still remains, how are ALEC drafted bills being pushed as potential New Jersey laws? Legislators have said that that the Governor’s office has provided the bills, it doesn’t seem like anyone around Team Christie wants to provide an answer, much less acknowledge the question at all.
Update: Wendy’s now says they are out too…
Wendy’s said on its official Twitter feed on Tuesday night that it, too, had left ALEC. “We decided late 2011 and never renewed this year. It didn’t fit our business needs,” the company tweeted. Wendy’s is currently not a member of ALEC, it stressed.
Update 2: Steve Oroho says he’s not going anywhere:
“It’s almost as if you’re not allowed to have any type of collaboration or research,” he said of criticism of ALEC’s bills. “Why would you start from scratch every single time? That’s absurd,” Oroho said.