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Jonathan Williams

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Learn more about corporations VOTING to rewrite our laws.

Public Employees' Bargaining Battle: Coming Soon to Your State?

Jonathan Williams is the Director of the Tax and Fiscal Policy Task Force at the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). Prior to working at ALEC, he worked for the Tax Foundation. He is also the Director of the Center for Competitive State Fiscal Policy, a front group that shares the same name as the Tax Foundation's Center for Competitive State Fiscal Policy.[1][2]

ALEC is not a lobby; it is not a front group. It is much more powerful than that. Through ALEC, behind closed doors, corporations hand state legislators the changes to the law they desire that directly benefit their bottom line. Along with legislators, corporations have membership in ALEC. Corporations sit on all nine ALEC task forces and vote with legislators to approve “model” bills. They have their own corporate governing board which meets jointly with the legislative board. (ALEC says that corporations do not vote on the board.) They fund almost all of ALEC's operations. Participating legislators, overwhelmingly conservative Republicans, then bring those proposals home and introduce them in statehouses across the land as their own brilliant ideas and important public policy innovations—without disclosing that corporations crafted and voted on the bills. ALEC boasts that it has over 1,000 of these bills introduced by legislative members every year, with one in every five of them enacted into law. ALEC describes itself as a “unique,” “unparalleled” and “unmatched” organization. It might be right. It is as if a state legislature had been reconstituted, yet corporations had pushed the people out the door. Learn more at

According to the ALEC website, "Williams co-authored 'Rich States, Poor States: ALEC-Laffer Economic Competitiveness Index.' Jonathan has been a contributing author to the Reason Foundation’s Annual Privatization Report and has written for the Ash Institute. He is also a contributor to The Examiner and serves as an adjunct fiscal policy fellow at the Kansas Policy Institute. Williams graduated magna cum laude from Northwood University in Midland, Mich., majoring in economics, banking/finance, and business management. While at Northwood, he was the recipient of the prestigious Ludwig von Mises Award in Economics.[3]

Williams spoke about the book at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy in Oct. 2010.[4]

He is also listed as a co-author of the "State Budget Toolkit," a manual containing many provisions similar to the austerity measures being implemented in states nation-wide -- many see it as the "road map" or "blue print" for these measures. [5]


Participation at the 2011 ALEC Annual Conference

Williams partook in the Tax and Fiscal Policy Task Force meeting at the 2011 ALEC Annual Meeting, leading a discussion, alongside ALEC "scholar, Stephen Moore, about the 4th Edition of Rich States, Poor States.[6]

Articles and resources

  • "PBS Newshour: Wisconsin Public Workers Union Rights Go Head-to-Head with State Budget Woes"
  • "Federal Bailout of the States -- Jonathan Williams of ALEC on FOX Business News"
  • "Jonathan Williams"
  • "Rich States, Poor States 3rd Edition"

Related SourceWatch articles

External resources

External articles


  1. [American Legislative Exchange Council, 2011 Conference Receptions, conference brochure on file with CMD, August 11, 2011]
  2. "State Tax and Spending Policy" Tax Foundation. Accessed Aug. 16, 2011.
  3. American Legislative Exchange Council.Meet Our Staff. Organizational website. Accessed May 25, 2011.
  4. Mackinac Center for Public Policy. Rich States, Poor States: Mackinac Center hosts economist, author Jonathan Williams. Oct. 19, 2010.
  5. American Legislative Exchange Council. State Budget Reform Toolkit. Organizational website. Accessed July 8, 2011.
  6. [American Legislative Exchange Council, 2011 Conference Task Force Meetings, conference brochure on file with CMD, August 11, 2011]
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