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NPR: Prison Economics Help Drive Ariz. Immigration Law

NPR In the aftermath of Arizona's racist immigration law SB 1070, NPR has exposed links between private prison companies and Arizona lawmakers.  This story is the latest from mainstream news organizations working to document connections between the for-profit prison industry and policymaking.  Earlier this year, Rachel Maddow and a local news organization in Arizona ran a similar story.

This report has implications for Texas since it highlights the influence of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). According to ALEC's website, several state lawmakers participate in ALEC public sector committees. State Reps Joe Driver and Jerry Madden sit on the Public Safety and Elections committee while company officials from the American Bail Coalition and prison profiteer Corrections Corporation of America sit on the committee's private sector counter part. 

And several years ago, former State Rep. Ray Allen who was reported to have ties to ALEC and preceded Rep. Madden as chairman of the House Corrections committee, was caught in a scandal.  Allen was reported to be lobbying in other state legislatures on behalf of a private corrections company

According to NPR, additional reports will be published on ALEC's influence in state legislatures.  We will update this story as more information becomes available. 

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