SPREADING THE MESSAGE
Now that you’ve formed a group, your biggest priority–other than continuing to grow your membership–is to start actively contacting your local state legislator to begin putting pressure on them.
CONTACTING YOUR STATE LEGISLATOR
Unlike most members of Congress, many state legislators manage their own email and social media accounts, giving you a direct line to engage them with. On any medium, the key is amplifying your voice by being persistent and convincing others to reach out as well. One tweet or post will not sway your legislator’s opinion, but hundreds of posts show him or her that many constituents are upset about their ALEC ties.
EMAIL – State legislators still rely heavily on email to hear from their constituents. Most state legislators check their inboxes personally and provide individual responses – THIS CAN BE USED AS MATERIAL AGAINST THE LEGISLATOR LATER.
You can use our online tool to write to your legislator and have it delivered to their inbox: http://standuptoalec.org/write-a-letter/
TWITTER – Since the advent of the Twitter Presidency, Twitter has become one of the most effective ways to get in contact with politicians. We recommend tagging the legislator directly, as opposed to sending them a direct message, so that there is a public record of your dialogue. That means your posts drawing attention to the legislator’s ALEC ties will get more attention. To tweet your legislator about their ALEC ties, tag the legislator by typing out the legislator’s Twitter handle. Here are some sample Tweets:
@STATE_LEGISLATOR doesn’t write bills – @ALEC_States and their corporate donors write them for him. That’s not democracy!
#StandUptoALEC@STATE_LEGISLATOR, how many extravagant @ALEC_States vacations have you been on? You work for us, not ALEC #StandUptoALEC
We voted for @STATE_LEGISLATOR, not @ALEC_States and their corporate donors! ALEC shouldn’t be making our policies #StandUptoALEC
@STATE_LEGISLATOR should spend more time representing us and less time on lavish ALEC vacations
@STATE_LEGISLATOR, don’t put our democracy up for sale! You should represent us, not @ALEC_States #StandUptoALEC
@STATE_LEGISLATOR, legislators should write laws, not corporations! Leave @ALEC_States today!
FACEBOOK – While not as it once was, Facebook is still a medium that many people–politicians and constituents, alike–use and should not be ignored. Your Facebook posts should be linking directly to your Twitter posts to maximize traction and you may want to consider posting on the legislator’s page directly.
USING DIGITAL MEDIA TO CONTACT THE PRESS
Set up a Google News Alert (https://news.google.com/news) so you know what is being written about your state legislators. Find out which reporters cover the state legislature and your specific legislators, and begin building relationships with them by following them on social media. Whenever you plan or attend an event, reach out to the reporter with information about your actions and a quote. This will make it easy for the reporter to write about your group and create bad press for your ALEC legislator.
Make sure to amplify your actions and events by posting to social media. If you tag reporters, they will know what is happening and they may write about it, spreading your message further. The more people know you are trying to talk to your legislator about ALEC, the better.