I was just skimming through “ALEC Exposed,” a fantastic and disturbing document dump from the Center for Media and Democracy, which for the first time shows us over 800 pieces of “model legislation” drafted by and for corporations through the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). Hooray for whistleblowers! And hooray for CMD for doing some great analysis and publishing to add context and show this stuff for the corruption of democracy that it is.
But I can’t help but think there’s a huge missed opportunity here to take it to the next level. Imagine if all of these “model bills” were available via a machine-queryable API. It would then be pretty easy to write a web-based system that would continuously monitor the APIs of state legislatures for new bills being introduced that had significant textual concordance with the ALEC model legislation. Automated corporate influence detection!