The conservative nonprofit group linked by liberal activists to “stand your ground” laws like the one invoked in the Trayvon Martin shooting said Tuesday that it will no longer advocate on social-policy and public-safety issues, according to Reuters and The New York Times.
Several big corporations have dropped affiliations with the American Legislative Exchange Council amid the controversy over the use of the “stand your ground” defense in the February shooting of an unarmed black teenager in Florida. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation said last week that it would no longer make grants to the organization.
The council, a network of more than 2,000 state lawmakers that crafts model legislation and policy stands on hundreds of issues, said it will narrow its focus to economic matters. Liberal and civil-rights groups have pounded the council for its support of stand-your-ground and voter-ID laws they contend disenfranchise minorities.
Chip Rogers, a Georgia legislator and the council’s treasurer, said the organization was already considering such a shift but that the Martin controversy “may have sped up the process.”