WASHINGTON, DC – Rep. Ron DeSantis (FL-06), a member of the House Committee on the Judiciary, issued the following statement in response to the roughly 300 letters sent by Senate Majority Whip Richard Durbin (D-IL) to the CEOs of American businesses regarding their purported involvement with the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). In the letter Durbin specifically asks each company if they are currently involved with or are funding ALEC.  He goes on to demand whether or not the company supports 'Stand Your Ground’ laws, which ALEC has generally supported.   Finally, the letter also noted that all responses would be made public. 

"Senator Durbin’s inquiry on ‘Stand Your Ground’ laws constitutes a thinly-veiled threat masquerading as fact finding.  Self-defense laws are a matter of state, not federal, law; there is little reason for Senator Durbin to involve his federal subcommittee in this issue, much less to be using the power of his office to extract political positions from companies which he has the power to regulate.

"Senator Durbin has no right to force an individual or company to announce support or opposition to a political issue.   This is a Chicago-style tactic, as these harassing letters represent Senator Durbin’s attempt to intimidate individuals and businesses from supporting causes that run counter to liberal policies.

"This is but the latest in a growing series of cases of the Obama administration, and Democratic Leadership, using the levers of power to bully those that disagree with liberal orthodoxy.  These companies, their employees, and all American citizens, have the right to express their views without fear of harassment and intimidation. Senator Durbin should apologize for this clear abuse of power, and I hope recipients of these letters will decline to respond."