Beth Bernstein
Beth Bernstein

(Columbia, SC) — (4/30/2012) – House District 78 candidate Beth Bernstein today called on Representative Joan Brady to disclose and denounce her affiliation with the American Legislative Exchange Council, (ALEC), a radical special interest group.

ALEC is an organization that disguises itself as nonprofit when, in reality, it acts as a stealth special-interest lobbyist group with a socially conservative agenda. A watchdog group is currently requesting that the IRS investigate ALEC for using tax-free status despite conducting political and lobbying activities.

According to recent local and national news accounts, ALEC has been pushing bills to make it more difficult for seniors and young people to vote, controversial gun laws, and plans to dismantle healthcare for seniors.

In addition to its lobbying efforts, ALEC also has been paying for lawmakers’ travel junkets all across the country.

ALEC has been specifically exempted from South Carolina lobbying laws. “If elected, the first bill I will introduce will be to remove ALEC’s exemption in our laws,” Bernstein said. “ALEC’s influence over our legislators to promote radical legislation puts corporate interests over the working families and consumers in our State.”

Rep. Joan Brady is a member of ALEC and currently serves on its Communication and Technology Task Force.

“My opponent is a member of this organization and it is important for the public to know about their elected representatives’ affiliations with right wing organizations,” Bernstein said. “Ms. Brady should come clean about all of her trips associated with ALEC. How many trips? Where? These are important questions that deserve answers.”

Bernstein also called on Brady to separate herself from ALEC. “She should renounce her affiliation with this radical organization. I am worried that the people of House District 78 are not being represented with the integrity and loyalty I think they deserve.”

“I am not running to represent the interest of a radical right wing special-interest group.  I am campaigning for the interests of the people of House District 78 and South Carolina. Ms. Brady’s affiliation with this organization is just one symptom of what’s wrong with state government. When lawmakers forget about home, like Ms. Brady has done, it’s time for change,” said Bernstein.

Bernstein, 42, chose to run for the House because of her concern about the direction South Carolina is headed under the current leadership. She grew up in the District and has chosen to raise her family there. She practices law in her family law firm, Bernstein and Bernstein, LLC, in Columbia. She and her husband, Rip Sanders, are proud parents of Caroline, 8, and Isabel, 3.

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