The American Legislative Exchange Council is holding a policy summit in Washington, D.C., this week, brainwashing more American legislators into exchanging their conscience for the counsel of corporate raiders. ALEC wants to protect energy company profits by doing things like penalizing homeowners for installing solar panels. ALEC is creating a sister organization called the Jeffersonian Project to shield its lobbying activities. Thanks to blowback from its support for stand-your-ground laws and other conservative jerkiness, ALEC is losing money and members.

But some South Dakota legislators are doing their part fill ALEC's coffers with our tax dollars. Here's a list of eight South Dakota Republicans who have claimed reimbursements for travel to ALEC's annual meeting in Chicago in August:


South Dakota Legislature ALEC Reimbursements, August 2013

According to this public document from the Legislative Research Council, Reps. Isaac Latterell, Jenna Haggar (did they visit any Windy City head shops together?), Jim Stalzer, Leslie Heinemann, and Manny Steele, and Senators Dan Lederman, Ryan Maher, and Larry Rhoden rang up $15,460.89 on the state's tab at ALEC's August shindig. Senator Rhoden racked up the biggest bill, $2,411.42, for the three-day event. That should prove who in the U.S. Senate race is the real conservative, right?

LRC won't have all the reimbursement requests for this week's ALEC meeting for several weeks. But a couple of Pierre observers have reported that Rep. Hal Wick skipped the Governor's budget address Tuesday in order to get out to D.C. early for the ALEC meeting. (Recall that Wick was ALEC's legislator of the year in 2006.) A sign-in sheet for Tuesday's Capitol gathering also shows a notation that Rep. Brock Greenfield checked in but also plans to claim reimbursement for his travel to this week's ALEC meeting.

So that's ten legislators selling South Dakota out to corporate fascism. Keep an eye on the bills Rhoden, Wick, and his fellow travelers float for ALEC in our Legislature this winter.