| It's not just|
a good idea
Model legislation is the practice of legislation being drafted by outside advocacy and pressure groups, who then lobby U.S. state and federal legislators, or sometimes local jurisdictions, to sponsor and pass the bills. Many pressure groups approach state governments with model legislation seeking to pass it in all 50 states, rather than trying to pass it at the federal level. There is some truth to the old adage that legislation is "written by lawyers" and not written, nor read, by the legislators who pass it.
- The American Bar Association is often the source of model legislation.
- The American Legislative Exchange Council has come under fire for its prolific use of this practice to pass anti-trade union, prison privatization, "tough on crime" laws, voter-ID laws, and Arizona's anti-immigration law.
- The Anti-Defamation League's model legislation for enhanced sentencing for bias-motivated crimes (or so-called "hate crimes")
- The Coalition for Fire-Safe Cigarettes' model legislation mandating "fire-safe" cigarettes.
- The Innocence Project has drafted model legislation seeking to use DNA testing and other methods to free those who have been wrongly convicted such as prisoners on death row.
- PETA has drafted model legislation for local spay and neuter ordinances. Other animal rights groups have proposed model legislation to create state registries of "animal abusers", ban puppy mills and make bestiality a crime.
Intelligent Design and other creationist nuttery
Wikipedia has an extensive list of similar bills mandating the teaching of ID and/or creationism that have been considered in state legislatures. The Discovery Institute's current model legislation was drafted in 2007 and the push to get it before state legislatures began in earnest after the 2008 release of the film Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed. Walt Ruloff, one of the film's producers appeared together with Ben Stein at a press conference on April 15, 2008 at the Heritage Foundation stating that the intention was to piggyback on the publicity from the film to promote passage of their
"academic freedom" IDiocy bill.
- ↑ http://www.inthesetimes.com/article/6084/corporate_con_game/
- ↑ http://www.thenation.com/article/161978/alec-exposed
- ↑ http://www.adl.org/99hatecrime/text_legis.asp
- ↑ http://www.firesafecigarettes.org/categoryList.asp?categoryID=55&URL=Model%20legislation
- ↑ http://www.innocenceproject.org/fix/Model-Legislation.php
- ↑ http://www.peta.org/issues/companion-animals/model-spay-and-neuter-ordinances.aspx
- ↑ http://www.aldf.org/article.php?id=262
- ↑ http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=90024822
- ↑ Read the complete text of the model legislation here
- ↑ http://www.discovery.org/a/5621
- ↑ http://blog.heritage.org/2008/04/15/win-ben-steins-popcorn/
- ↑ Ronald Bailey, "Flunk This Movie", Reason April 16, 2008