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start on page 5 Strategies for State Think Tanks – MAY/JUNE 2013

By Lynn Harsh

“Effective governance by the board of a nonprofit organization is a rare and unnatural act.” – The New Work of the Nonprofit Board, Harvard Business Review, Sept. 1996, Barbara E. Taylor, Richard P. Chait, and Thomas P. Holland Sixteen years have passed since that line appeared in a Harvard Business Review article. Most nonprofit experts seemed to think things would get better, that the rapid growth of American nonprofits had outstripped leadership savvy about the job description and value of a good board. Generally speaking, not much has changed. In a June 29, 2010 HBR blog, David Simms wrote, “During a conference I attended last month at the Omidyar Network, one of the CEO participants described the nonprofit board at one of his prior organizations as “an aquarium of dead fish.” Does it really matter? Is the nonprofit board anything more than a legal requirement? Consider this. We stand in the gap between statists and a free society where opportunity, personal responsibility and the ability to live out our ideals is cherished. Failure to persuade opinion-shapers and lawmakers that the benefits of liberty are worth protection means certain peril for the great American experiment. The magnitude of this responsibility begs for boards filled with talented, diligent and humble leaders: high performers who

bring their ability and experience to the task of resuscitating and advancing liberty, people who see the future and will help an institute and its senior leaders become equal to the responsibility of our time. Though dozens of marvelous exceptions exist, the liberty movement is woefully short on this kind of outstanding board talent. Most often, an institute’s senior leader can help change this reality. It’s worth the effort because a good board can help an institute go from mediocre to extraordinary. Imagine having access to Fortune 500-type talent without having to pay the salaries! Some CEOs, however, fear a strong board. They have had nothing but bad experiences, often with a board they “inherited.” Others have personal insecurities that cause them to fear the accountability and personal growth that a good board ensures. They censor the important information a board would need to know to perform well. Sometimes a board does not have enough information because the senior leader is undisciplined and careless about providing it. Still other CEOs are so confident of their ability that they view the board as an unnecessary appendage holding them back. They purposely choose do-nothing governance. A talented person will not bring his or her best to a board where it is not expected or desired. If the decisions are mostly process-oriented, if the vision is small and the strategy ambiguous, capable people will not be attracted to join. If you continued on page 23

1655 North Fort Myer Drive, Suite 360, Arlington, VA 22209 Phone: 703-243-1655 Fax: 703-740-0314

MAY / JUNE 2013 Vol 14 / Issue 3 SPN News reports on issues of importance to state-focused, market-oriented, nonprofit public policy research organizations. Drawing from current updates and events from within the industry, the publication provides timely information on the most pressing

By Meredith Turney

There’s an old idiom that admonishes against “preaching to the choir.” After all, why waste time and resources trying to convince those who are already converts to your cause? But underlying this obvious wisdom is an even greater implied truth. Too often, people preach to the choir because they’re afraid of or uncertain how to talk to anyone outside their core audience. Such a task could require new skills, tailoring a new message and, perhaps most intimidating, figuring out who your new audience is. Sometimes it’s not easy to break free of comfort zones when it comes to communicating. It’s so much easier to share one’s message with those who will answer with a resounding, “Amen!” But in politics and public policy, the victory goes to those who can convince a majority to support their cause. So if our goal is to build a lasting freedom majority in America, it requires going beyond the boundaries of those who already support our organizations to winning the hearts and minds of new audiences. Two state think tanks have shown great success in reaching out to new audiences with innovative messaging and branding events. In April, the Freedom Foundation in Washington state hosted an e vent with Crossfit founder Greg Glassman. Introduced to him and his free-market beliefs at the 2012 SPN Annual Meeting, the Freedom Foundation saw an opportunity to reach out to the thousands of Crossfit enthusiasts in the Evergreen State who may share their values. “Mr. Glassman spoke of the need to pursue excellence,” explained Rebecca Phillips, the Freedom Foundation’s Student Freedom Project coordinator, who organized the event. “A free enterprise system creates

conditions where people can pursue excellence in a way that produces success. The Crossfit model provides opportunity to achieve the success you want and to become the most improved version of yourself.”

issues facing public policy state think tank executives. State

The event itself was a huge success i n i nt ro d u c i n g th e th i n k t a n k to an entirely new audience (more than 500 were in attendance). Further, the Freedom Foundation discovered that the relationships it established with local business owners, through promoting the event, continue to grow.

State Policy Network is the capacity building service organization

S ometime s re aching a whole ne w audience means learning a new language. Independence Institute knew that to reach the Hispanic community in Colorado it would mean speaking their language – literally. “We understand that free markets don’t know gender or race,” explained Amy Oliver Cooke, the Institute’s Energy Policy Center director. “They empower every single community, and for too long we thought people would come to our message. Instead, we have to take the message to them.” So Independence Institute launched the Raaki Garcia show on KNRV, Denver’s Spanish talk-radio station. “Raaki talks about energy, she talks about school choice – issues that this community cares about, and the response has been overwhelming,” shared Cooke. These are just two exciting examples of how our network is already reaching out to new audiences and sharing the free market values we know will unleash the full power and potential of a free people. How will your organization challenge the status quo to find new audiences? What innovative ways will you find to reach them? Meredith Turney is director of strategic communications with SPN. Write her at

Policy Network publishes SPN News six times a year. Individual copies can be ordered from the State Policy Network offices at 703-243-1655. All images used in this issue are owned by their respective copyright holders. All rights reserved.

MISSION STATEMENT for America’s free market, state-focused think tank community. We advance a free society by providing leadership development, management training and networking opportunities for think tank professionals and by promoting strategic partnerships among market-oriented organizations.

STATE POLICY NETWORK™ Tracie Sharp, President and CEO Alexis Baker, Donor Relations Manager Teresa Brown, Director of Strategic Operations Rebecca Bruchhauser, Director of Donor Relations Jennifer Butler, Vice President of External Relations Caleb Eboch, Program Coordinator Daniel Erspamer, Vice President for Strategic Partnerships Rebecca Feldman, Manager of Foundation Relations Brad Gruber, Director of Operations Lynn Harsh, Vice President of Strategy Becky Helland,* Leadership Development Initiative Operations and Tactical Officer Spencer Hughes, Development Associate Rachel Kopec, Coalitions Coordinator Jerry Krause, Donor Relations Manager Sharon Milhollin, Executive Assistant Kristina Mitten Sanders, Development Specialist Daniel Montgomery,* Graphic Designer Kathleen O’Hearn, Director of Coalitions Rebecca Painter, Donor Relations Manager Michelle Poehlmann,* Administrative Assistant Betsy Thraves, Executive Assistant Meredith Turney, Director of Strategic Communications Kurt T. Weber,* Senior Advisor and Editor, SPN News Maura Weber, Donor Relations Assistant Nicole Williams, Senior Communications Advisor (Consultant) Tony Woodlief, Executive Vice President *Independent contractor

BOARD OF DIRECTORS Thomas A. Roe, Founding Chairman (1927 - 2000) Gaylord K. Swim (1948 - 2005) Theodore D. Abram............American Institute for Full Employment Whitney L. Ball...........................................................Donors Trust Carl Helstrom (Chairman).................................The JM Foundation John W. Jackson.................................... Adolph Coors Foundation Barbara Wells Kenney .................................. Freedom Foundation Adam Meyerson...................................... Philanthropy Roundtable Tracie J. Sharp (President)............................ State Policy Network Stanford D. Swim.......................................... The GFC Foundation Bridgett G. Wagner.................................. The Heritage Foundation Thomas Willcox....................................... Thomas Roe Foundation 1655 North Fort Myer Drive, Suite 360, Arlington, VA 22209 Phone: 703-243-1655 Fax: 703-740-0314

SPN NEWS 2 MAY / JUNE 2013 ®

Robert Brinkman

In Support of Workers and Liberty A successful

entrepreneur and

passionate defender of free enterprise, Robert

"Bob" Brinkman believes that our Founding

Fathers had it right from the very beginning of

our great country. “True economic freedom

can only be achieved

through free markets.

Government interference is a sure way to distort,

Zealand Christina and Bob Brinkman hiking in New

discourage or prevent economic activity.”

A strong belief in America’s rich history of freedom and

opportunity – and a growing concern that these principles are under attack today – has driven Bob to become passionately

involved in the comprehensive and coordinated state-focused

to the union leadership which is then used to influence politicians. And it is a cycle that must be stopped.”

That is why he has chosen to invest so generously in the

strategy of State Policy Network.

freedom movement and why he chooses to partner with State

Bob learned the value of hard work at a young age. As a

for future generations of Americans. Bob knows that it will take

boy, he worked in his school’s cafeteria washing dishes and cleaning tables. In the cold New York winters, he plowed

driveways in the neighborhood to earn spending money. In

1969, after a stint in the U.S. Army, Bob seized an opportunity to purchase CJ Winter Machine Works in Rochester, N.Y., the company at which he’d worked summers and school breaks.

Policy Network to protect economic freedom and opportunity strong leaders supported by a powerful network to hold the

line for freedom in these challenging times. He has a strong

appreciation for the unique and leveraged role SPN plays in building, supporting and mobilizing the thriving network of freedom movements in every state.

Forty years of Bob’s leadership has positioned the company

Bob and his wife Christina hope to preserve and expand our

tools and attachments.

Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation, the National Rifle

Knowing firsthand the virtues of hard work, Bob has always

health care institutions.

to become the world’s leading manufacturer of thread-rolling

believed in rewarding his employees for hard work, results

freedoms through their generous support of SPN, the National Association, as well as a number of civic, educational and

and dedication. Given his experience, he has long been an

Bob believes we must win and freedom must prevail to

country. He feels that high performing employees should

“Our Founders knew that freedom and free enterprise would

be held back by constraints placed upon them by onerous

land of opportunity for all. Freedom would allow people to

avid supporter of workplace freedom movements across the

improve people’s lives and allow people to flourish. He asserts,

be able to reap the benefits of their own hard work and not

be the key to unlocking prosperity and making America the

union contracts.

better themselves through their own hard work and personal

Bob says, “Unions destroy far more jobs than they create,

drive for success.”

and compulsory dues only protect the flow of union money

SPN NEWS 3 MAY / JUne 2013

Secure Liberty with Local Initiative and Referendum By Leslie Graves and Geoff Pallay

Glenn Vodhanel is not a candidate, a campaign manager, a government official or a city employee. But on the night of November 6, 2012, after the ballots in his hometown of Brea, California, had been counted, Vodhanel was celebrating a victory. He had brought government reform to his small community – without requiring the help of elected officials who so often combat reform.

percent of them grant this right to their citizens. The tool that Glenn Vodhanel used to circumvent the legislative process and put an issue straight on his local ballot is available to millions of Americans, in hundreds of poorly-managed cities.

Vodhanel popped the champagne cork when he learned that voters in Brea had resoundingly approved his brainchild, Measure T. A simple measure that places a cap on the salary of the city manager in Brea, Measure T was on the ballot because Vodhanel collected signatures on petitions to get it on the city ballot. Five months earlier in San Diego, city voters had approved San Diego Measure B, which also earned its spot on the city ballot because supporters collected signatures on petitions. That vote was a decisive victory for the local government pension-reform movement. The day after the election, a front-page story in The New York Times speculated that Measure B might start a trend in financially troubled cities across the country. Vodhanell didn’t set out to change the laws of Brea with a ballot initiative. In fact, he didn’t even know what a ballot initiative was when he learned that the city manager was drawing an annual salary of $341,000. When he tried to speak with city officials about his concerns, he was met with a “culture of disdain” and “an environment of condescension.” He heard about a nearby city that had placed a similar initiative on its local ballot. After many hours of work over several months, Vodhanel’s concern was put to a vote and approved by a majority of voters. Older libertarians and conservatives fondly remember California’s Proposition 13 property tax limit vote in 1978. That statewide ballot initiative was the result of a brushfire tax revolt in California and its success sparked tax-limitation brushfires in other states. Proposition 13 is why fiscal conservatives often use statewide ballot initiatives as a tool to put forward policy reforms. However, there is much less awareness among the politically active that the initiative and referendum process is also available in many cities.

A statewide mandate applies to both charter and general law cities A statewide mandate applies only to charter cities There is no statewide mandate but at least one city has adopted I&R A statewide mandate applies only to general law cities There are no statewide provisions for I&R. No cities have instituted I&R. Arkansas mandates I&R for general law and charter cities, but at present, no charter cities have been established. Wyoming provides for I&R in certain classes of cities, but at present, no munipalities are in this class.

Ballotpedia has compiled information about the local initiative and referendum process in each state to build public awareness about this option for positive policy reform. Ballotpedia has built 50 state-specific webpages that provide complete detail on which jurisdictions allow local ballot initiatives, how many signatures are required to qualify a local measure on the ballot, how long you can circulate petitions, subject restrictions on the types of laws that can be changed through the local initiative, and much more. We’ve also published a guide to walk activists through the steps of the process, from drafting the language of the proposed law to submitting the final petition and requisite signatures to the appropriate authority. The booklet, Local Ballot Initiatives: How citizens change laws with clipboards, conversations, and campaigns, is available as a free download at For years, organizations have tried to work with politicians to enact positive reform. But with the local ballot initiative, grassroots organizations can help effect change without the consent of the gatekeepers who so often keep change at bay.

Though the statewide ballot initiative process is available in two dozen states, 48 states have at least one city that allows its citizens to place prospective laws on the ballot by collecting signatures on petitions. Of the 10 largest cities in each state, about 70 SPN NEWS 4 may / june 2013

Leslie Graves is the president of the Lucy Burns Institute and Geoff Pallay is the director of research. Write them at and geoff., respectively.

State Policy Network




was weaker than the U.S. average in the previous expansion (Nov. 2001–Dec. 2007), and trails the nation in the current recovery, which started in June 2009. The Foundation also noted states bordering Arkansas that

For 20 years, Alabama Policy Institute has

do not levy an income tax have higher job

been a strong proponent of improving school

creation rates. The modest tax cuts create

choice in Alabama. Finally, in February the state

a 50 percent exemption for Arkansas capital

Legislature passed the Alabama Accountability

gains and reduce the top income tax rate from

Act, which establishes tax credit scholarships

7 to 6.9 percent.

for students zoned for a failing school. In April, API teamed up with Yellowhammer Politics to rank the state’s 50 largest cities for their business friendliness based on four distinct factors: economic vitality, business tax burden, community allure and transportation infrastructure. Lastly, API is pleased to announce the hiring of Katherine Robertson as legal counsel, Tara Howard as office manager, and Melissa King as development analyst and database manager.


Goldwater Institute client Alan Korwin’s speech was censored when the city of Phoenix tore down his bus shelter ads.

free-speech challenge on behalf of small businessman Alan Korwin. In 2010, Korwin’s company purchased 50 bus shelter ads picturing a heart inscribed with “Guns Save Lives” to drive traffic to its website. The city of Phoenix removed the ads, claiming they didn’t meet the standard of “proposing a commercial transaction,” despite other approved ads touting water-conservation, “Jesus Heals,” and other truly non-commercial content. The Institute is arguing that the city censored Korwin arbitrarily, thereby

Alaska Policy Forum caused quite a stir when it published a two-day, half-page ad in the Anchorage Daily News listing the wage/ compensation packages for Anchorage Municipal employees. Some 308 employees make more than the mayor. A city tree trimmer makes more than $171,000 annually, including benefits. APF’s ad set the tone for

violating his constitutionally guaranteed First Amendment rights. The case is expected to be heard in the Court of Appeals later this year. The partnership between the Institute and the ACLU highlights the importance of the case to fundamental freedoms.


of performance bonuses, outsourcing and

article that confirmed APF’s transparency efforts.


Two 1998 Arkansas Policy Foundation

than seven committee hearings. Ultimately, the bill legislators asked Greenberg to discuss – requiring voters at the polling place to show photo identification in order to deter election fraud – became law despite Gov. Mike Beebe’s veto. Legislators also asked Greenberg to testify on labor law, state and federal constitutional amendments, the rights of photographers, and criminal procedure. Meanwhile, AAI experts discussed Obamacare and Medicaid expansion at six town meetings around the state. AAI published seven papers on pending legislation during the legislative session. Shortly after the session ended, ace AAI journalist Nic Horton discovered, and broke the story on, that legislators had included several significant


tax cuts – were approved by legislators and the governor. Rep. Davy Carter, the first Republican Speaker of the House since Reconstruction, testified a capital gains tax During informational testimony to the House Revenue and Taxation Committee, the Policy

American Civil Liberties Union has filed

Foundation noted tax rates are a factor of

Institute’s appeal in Korwin v. Cotton, a

pointed out that Arkansas payroll employment

an amicus brief supporting the Goldwater

legislators to speak on election law at no less

recommendations – capital gains and income

cut would create incentives for job creators. In an odd-couple meeting of the minds, the

president Dan Greenberg was asked by

newly passed legislation.

efforts include no-strike clauses, elimination

encouraged the newspaper to print a full-page

busy throughout the legislative session. AAI

advances in Second Amendment freedoms in

efforts to rein in runaway union costs. These

pay raise limits. The Forum’s half-page ads

Advance Arkansas Institute staff stayed

economic development. The Foundation

SPN NEWS 5 MAY / June 2013

New supplements are being created for The 2011 Almanac of Environmental Trends. The first supplement on air quality is available now on the Pacific Research Institute website. The reduction in air pollution continues to be the most successful domain of pollution reduction since the first Earth Day in 1970. Since the first edition of this Almanac two

State Policy Network

State Updates

years ago, reductions in air pollution have


been astonishing. Save the date! The 2013 Annual Gala Dinner event has been scheduled in San Francisco for Nov. 1, featuring Dr.

After Florida Gov. Rick Scott shocked the

Charles Krauthammer as guest speaker.

limited-government movement by reversing

Krauthammer is an American Pulitzer

his opposition to Obamacare’s Medicaid

Prize-winning syndicated columnist, political commentator and physician. His column is

expansion, Foundation for Government

syndicated to more than 275 newspapers and

Accountability focused on defeating

media outlets. During the event, the Sir Antony Fisher Freedom Award will be presented to

Hon. George P. Shultz by Dr. Arthur B. Laffer, Ph.D. Details and reservations are available on our website.


expansion in the Legislature and preventing Amity Shlaes signs copies of her new biography on President Calvin Coolidgeafter she headlined a recent Yankee Institute luncheon.

Scott from adding a million more people to

than the rest of the state’s budget, to outstrip

research, FGA succeeded. Both the Senate’s

inflation, and to crowd out other spending. This is why the Yankee Institute supports having state government move toward a defined contribution benefit, 401(k)-styled retirement pension reform system through which state

The Independence Institute is filing a lawsuit against the recently passed unconstitutional Colorado gun laws. The lawsuit will be based on the 2nd and 14th Amendments, among other

employees contribute more to their own retirement funding.


the bills, citing that the magazine ban is horribly miswritten, with numerous constitutional problems. Kopel said that it might be possible to create a law about background checks which does not violate the 2nd Amendment, but that

Medicaid expansion in Florida, protecting taxpayers from billions in additional spending. Florida isn’t the only state where FGA made a difference. Through its Say No To Medicaid Expansion initiative, FGA is helping legislators and fellow think tanks defeat Medicaid expansion in states across the country.

initiative. In those

disability rights organizations, gun safety

David Kopel. Kopel urged the Governor to veto

and House's Obamacare committees rejected

are part of the

coalition of local and national law enforcement,

Lead attorney in the lawsuit will be I.I.’s own

strategy sessions, public testimony and original

Twenty-six states

grounds. It will be brought on behalf of a large

organizations, and civil rights organizations.

welfare. After intense advocacy, legislative

The Caesar Rodney Institute’s primary focus for 2013 is public education policy reform. CRI’s Fifth Annual Dinner was held April 24 with Frederick M. Hess, Ph.D., as the keynote speaker. Hess, in addition to being resident

states FGA provided in-person testimony, legislative and executive branch briefings, original research, and strategy to defeat Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion scheme.

scholar & director of education policy at the American Enterprise Institute, is the author of

HB 1224 is grotesquely overbroad, because it prohibits many innocent activities. He noted that the Independence Institute has repeatedly

Frederick Hess, Ph.D., AEI

offered to sit down with the legislature to help

Anniversary Gala on March 13 in Tallahassee,

draft legislation which would be constitutional.

an impressive number of books and studies


The James Madison Institute held its 25th

on the state of education in both the United States and other countries throughout the world. The K–12 education system in the

Florida, featuring Gov. Rick Scott, Florida Cabinet members and Speaker of the House Will Weatherford, as well as The Heritage Foundation’s Sen. Jim DeMint and Ed Feulner,

U.S. is flawed, but considering the diverse population and socio-economic status of the The number of retired Conneticut state employees whose pensions exceed the

children it serves, it is understandable why some other nation’s systems perform more

governor’s $150,000 salary has climbed to

effectively. His latest book, Cage Busting

Institute. A record 525 retired state employees

to surmount the layers of system flaws and

36, according to new research by the Yankee

Leadership, is a how-to guide for educators

enjoy $100,000 pensions. Overly generous

bureaucracy that interfere with the primary

pension benefits continue to grow faster

task of teaching children. SPN NEWS 6 May / JUNE 2013

JMI president and CEO Bob McClure, Ph.D., welcomes more than 400 attendees to the JMI 25th Anniversary Gala.

State Policy Network


Ph.D. A sold-out crowd gathered to

launch of our Student Outreach Scholarship

celebrate JMI’s impact and great moments

(SOS) Program. Foundation supporters’

in the Institute’s history, including the late

tax-deductible contributions fund college

Baroness Margaret Thatcher keynoting JMI’s 1996 Spring Conference, Reclaiming America’s Moral and Cultural Heritage. JMI president Bob McClure, Ph.D., and board member Rob Gidel, Sr., were each presented with the Governor’s Business Ambassador Award. Additionally, as the 2013 legislative session closed, JMI continued to lead aggressive policy

students attending events. Students can hear free-market leaders that would never reach their liberal campuses and can network with business, civic and political leaders. Feedback was great! Upcoming: the Fourth Annual Georgia Legislative Policy Forum on October 11.


education efforts to impact the state’s

outlets, will continue to provide Idahoans

decisions on many critical issues

with exchange-related issues as the state

including the Affordable Care Act,

struggles with its implementation. In the area

specifically Medicaid expansion, public employee pensions, tort reform, paid leave ordinances, school choice and education accountability.


Executive director Wayne Hoffman testifies before Idaho lawmakers who approved a state-based health care exchange.

of government transparency, IFF led the New Grassroot Institute of Hawaii president William Keli’i Akina, Ph.D., looks to build long-term relationships with other leaders/ organizations nationwide. In his first two months, the Institute hosted U.S. Sen. Mike

successful fight for permanent video archiving of legislative floor sessions instead of dumping them after a few days. Also, IFF helped defeat a tax credit for agriculture that would have benefitted larger producers over smaller ones in subsidizing establishment of a processing facility and helped stop a tax credit altering

Keli’i Akina, Ph.D., Grassroot Institute’s new president

The focus is on taxes, technology and targeting students. More than 250 enthusiastic friends and supporters heard Steve Moore of The Wall Street Journal talk about eliminating Georgia’s state

state hiring procedures to benefit veterans over other applicants. For the second year, IFF spearheaded the fight against a tanning bill

Lee, FreedomWorks president Matt Kibbe, and economist Mark Skousen for events. Grassroot held a transition BBQ celebration with GRIH founder Dick Rowland. Akina, an expert in East-West ethics, is part Hawaiian

imposing new regulations on the industry and a fine for permitting a minor to use a tanning booth.


and a community leader of advocacy efforts in Hawai’i. One of the organization’s highest priorities is reforming the Jones Act, protectionist legislation that dramatically increases the cost of living in Hawai’i. Akina attended the Association of Private Enterprise Georgia Public Policy Foundation president Kelly McCutchen (r) chats with Morehouse College students, the first to attend an event through the Student Outreach Scholarship Program.a

income tax at the Georgia Public Policy Foundation’s annual dinner in March. To create awareness of the consequences of tax actions, we’re fine-tuning a “game,”, where Georgians simulate the impact of tax

Education conference in Maui. The Institute is eager to bring more speakers, projects, conferences and events to Hawai`i, so please contact us with your ideas. Check out Grassroot’s newly relaunched website for more information, or contact executive director Tim Lussier at


cuts and hikes on state and personal

telemedicine and a May event, “The Future of Education.” April also saw the

University, recently ran for alderman in the town of Macomb, Illinois. Despite getting 17 of the 33 votes cast – which was 51.52 percent of the vote – the city refused to recognize Wailand as the winner. Macomb’s city code states that the candidate who receives a “majority” of votes wins, but the city claimed that its definition of “majority” requires a candidate to win “50% plusone vote” – not more than half. Democracy was restored, however. The Liberty Justice Center, a public interest litigation center started by the

Illinois Policy Institute, stepped in and filed a lawsuit that vindicated the constitutional rights

budgets. Technology-related events included an April panel discussion on

Steven Wailand, 20, a student at Western Illinois

of city of Macomb citizens. The court ruled that The Idaho Freedom Foundation’s reporting arm,, covered every significant meeting and, unlike other media SPN NEWS 7 MAY / June 2013

the definition of majority is “unambiguous” and ordered the city to declare Wailand winner of the race.

State Policy Network


State Updates

Kansans know this; those who do know,

groundwork for a multi-tiered collaboration for

refuse to acknowledge that interference

the introduction of the Intrastate Coal & Use

from Washington, D.C., forced them to put The Indiana Legislature has sent to Gov. Mike Pence a measure designed in part to track grade inflation in the state’s colleges

their interests above those of Kansas kids. Kansas Policy Institute produced a series of short YouTube videos highlighting the lower standards and the false sense of high

Act, which establishes constitutional arguments opposing EPA regulation of coal that never leaves Kentucky’s borders.


achievement held by many in the state. Student achievement data is used to bolster Norman Van Cott, Ph.D.

the idea that this reality is hurting the dreams of the children in the videos. U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and members of the

and universities. The action resulted from a

series of articles in the Indiana Policy Review Foundation’s quarterly journal by scholars

Norman Van Cott, Ph.D., and James McClure, Ph.D., who testified on the topic before a Senate study committee.


education establishment in Kansas are quoted to bring the point home. The videos are being promoted online and with a TV educational campaign to show the need for school choice and efficient spending in K–12 education.

Pelican Institute

The Pelican Institute served as a valuable resource to policymakers during the 2013 legislative session. Institute president Kevin Kane helped lead the charge to block the expansion of Medicaid in Louisiana by authoring a paper and testifying in committee. The arguments about the true cost of expanding Medicaid resonated with legislators and the expansion was voted down after a


lengthy and often heated debate. The Institute also defended recent education reforms against teachers’ unions efforts to undermine them. The Institute hosted a luncheon in New Orleans, featuring a panel discussion on the

Public Interest Institute research analyst Deborah D. Thornton testified at a public hearing before the Iowa House of Representatives in April, presenting information from the Institute’s latest Policy Study, Just Say No – and Keep Saying No – to Federal Health Care Exchanges and Medicaid

The Bluegrass Institute partnered with George Mason University’s Mercatus Center in April for its second annual Citizen’s Seminar entitled, Is Kentucky Competitive? Speakers included John Garen, Ph.D., a University of Kentucky economist who also serves as the Institute’s

Expansion. Thornton spoke in opposition to

timely question Whither the Republican Party? Panelists included former U.S. Congressman Jeff Landry, syndicated columnist Deroy Murdock, journalist Quin Hillyer, and Baton

Rouge Advocate editorial writer Lanny Keller.


expanding the state’s Medicaid program as provided for in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. As Thornton stated in

The Calvert Institute has issued a 64-page

her Policy Study, “we, the citizens, must not

report by Christopher P. Ryan on Maryland’s

be lured by the ‘promise’ of ‘free money’ and

teacher certification rules and its failure to

‘someone else’ paying for our health care, and instead insist on free-market driven reforms to address the real issues of cost transparency, inter-state portability, malpractice reform, and increased providers.” To read this and other Public Interest Institute studies, visit


BIPPS president Jim Waters introduces the Institute’s seminar Is Kentucky Competitive?

Board of Scholars chairman; Mercatus senior research fellow Matt Mitchell; and Maurice McTigue, a former New Zealand cabinet minister who now directs the Mercatus Center’s Government Accountability Project. Attendees included activists, local elected officials and chamber of commerce representatives. With an eye toward both regulators’ attacks on Kentucky’s energy economy and the state’s

Like most states, Kansas dumbed down

2014 legislative session, the Bluegrass is

effectively utilize alternative certification. The report outlines best practices in other states and reviews national studies on the relative effectiveness of conventional and alternative certification. It concludes that rules requiring a year of education courses operate to exclude qualified scientists, males and racial minorities, particularly blacks, from the teaching force.




standards in public education in response

establishing a federalism strategy to push back

Pioneer Institute has led the opposition

to No Child Left Behind. Unfortunately, few

against the EPA. The Institute is laying the

against Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick’s

SPN NEWS 8 May / JUNE 2013

State Policy Network


recent Issues & Ideas forum about Medicaid expansion, and also met with several key legislators about the topic. Kristine Palosaari has joined the Center as vice president for advancement.


provided by the Freedom Foundation of Minnesota. Their message to the governor? We’re taxed enough–cut spending! Since last November’s elections, the Foundation has devoted itself to educating policymakers and citizens about the massive tax increases, the dramatic increase in state spending and the devastating effects both of these might have on our slowly recovering economy.

The Bay State’s 19 largest medical device companies face a new excise tax of more than $422 million.

proposed income tax jump to fund transportation expansion projects, publishing an alternative plan and calling attention to wasteful spending. In March, Gregory Sullivan, former State

Minnesotans, unfortunately, voted for more not less government last November and

they’re getting it. Center of the American Experiment is building the case that

expanded state government harms social mobility and prosperity. Peter Nelson’s spending report shows a 667 percent increase

Inspector General, became Pioneer’s new

FFM CEO Annette Meeks has appeared on dozens of television and radio talk shows, published newspaper opinion columns and embarked upon a dynamic social media campaign to educate citizens about the consequences that are going to occur if income and other taxes are increased.

research director. His debut report exposed lavish employee salaries and benefits in the state’s transit system and garnered widespread print and TV media attention. In April, Pioneer released the latest in a series of reports on

Mississippi Center for Public Policy has been

the impact of the Affordable Care Act on

at the center of the two biggest public policy

Massachusetts’ economy, showing that this year the Bay State’s 19 largest medical device companies face a new excise tax of more than $422 million. In education, Pioneer held an event on improving K–12 U.S. history instruction with Pulitzer-Prize winning Civil War historian James McPherson and gained Senate support for a graduation test on U.S. history.


fights in the state recently, and for the moment, At the April 27 Minnesota capitol Tax Rally, CAE's Kim Crockett listens as Late Night Debate radio host Jack Tomczak addresses the crowd.

in spending since 1960, while his tax report shows that Minnesotans are leaving for better climates – and we don’t just mean weather.

online legislative tracking tool, recently celebrated a milestone as it described its 25,000th bill. The service describes in plainEnglish every bill, amendment and resolution introduced in the Michigan Legislature, and last year it received 800,000 page views. It also

been fighting to pass a law allowing charter schools in Mississippi, and finally, this legislative session, it passed. In other news, State Auditor Stacey Pickering recently described MCPP as Mississippi’s “leading voice of opposition”

The Center exposed energy policy as trendy

to the implementation of Obamacare. So far,

be following up with a tale of three cities

Mississippi should not expand its Medicaid

bling in its series Green Follies, and it will

that used “free” federal funds to install solar panels on city hall. Kim Crockett’s leadership, the Mackinac Center’s

helped win both! For many years, MCPP has

on pension reform is bringing visibility to the issue (police and teachers are reaching out to us), and Kathy Kersten’s research has significantly altered proposed “anti-bullying” legislation which would tie schools in knots as well as make hash of the First Amendment.

MCPP has successfully made the case that program and must not create a state health insurance exchange. MCPP’s efforts have been so successful that one of the state’s most wellknown and liberal columnists wrote a hit-piece claiming that MCPP is operating a “shadow government,” that the governor is “doing their bidding,” and that MCPP is the “most influential lobby at the capitol.”


tracks missed votes by legislators, which have fallen from more than 21,000 when the website began in 2001 to 2,200 last year. On Oct. 7 the Center will welcome John Mackey, co-founder and co-CEO of Whole Foods Market and author of Conscious Capitalism, as the keynote speaker at its 25th anniversary gala. Avik Roy,

“Elections have consequences” was the response given by Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton to a frustrated crowd of taxpayers at a recent town hall meeting. Hundreds of

senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute and

concerned citizens have flocked to these

health care policy expert, spoke at the Center’s

meetings, armed with intellectual ammo SPN NEWS 9 MAY / June 2013

The unfunded liability of public pensions is an economic ticking time bomb in Missouri. That was the conclusion of a new policy study by Andrew Biggs, Ph.D., of the American Enterprise Institute for the Show-Me Institute. Biggs believes the

State Policy Network unfunded liability for the state’s five largest

State Updates



The Nevada Policy Research Institute’s studies

New Mexico’s legislative session concluded

and testimony continue to make a difference in

with the successful passage of needed

Carson City. In partnership with the Beacon Hill

deregulation of the state’s motor carriers.

Institute, NPRI released a study showing that over

The Rio Grande Foundation’s work on

12 years Nevada’s Renewable Portfolio Standard

regulatory reform played a significant role

will cost ratepayers $2.2 billion and lead to 1,930

in this accomplishment. This spring RGF

the state of Missouri. It’s an obligation that

fewer jobs. Former Nevada Superintendent

hosted a series of events with John Blundell

leaves taxpayers, not just retirees, on the

James W. Guthrie, Ph.D., authored for NPRI

who discussed Margaret Thatcher and


a revenue-neutral plan to pay elite teachers

women of the liberty movement. Myron Ebell

$200,000 a year. Unsurprisingly, the teachers

of Competitive Enterprise Institute continued

public pensions is close to $54 billion, almost five times higher than the $11 billion officially reported. The discrepancy, he reports, is basically because the public pensions are allowed to assume an unrealistically high rate of return. He suggests shifting to a defined contribution plan similar to private sector 401(k)s. Some reform is clearly needed. The unfunded liability figure cited by Biggs comes to $9,000 for every man, woman and child in


union opposed it, huffing that it would only support across-the-board pay increases. This is a chance to drive another wedge between teachers and union bosses. Both studies earned

The Platte Institute played an instrumental

statewide print, TV and radio coverage, with

role in the Nebraska legislature’s decision to

Guthrie’s proposal headlining the Sunday edition

delay Medicaid expansion. The Institute’s policy study, Medicaid Expansion: The Economic Analysis Dilemma, authored by Sean Riley of

of Nevada’s largest paper. NPRI’s launch of 2012 government employee salary data on generated hundreds of thousands of page views and statewide media coverage.

New Jersey

the discussion of government regulations with a series of talks statewide, and RGF hosted a debate with a representative of a left-wing think tank on the importance of the federal deficit and debt. Lastly, RGF has brought to the forefront the issue of exporting liquefied natural gas. According to the Foundation’s calculations, were the Obama Administration to approve exports, the state could see the immediate addition of 2,000 new jobs and $200 million in new economic activity.

New York Platte Institute executive director Jim Vokal (at podium), with the support of several Nebraska legislators, leads a press conference on the economic consequences of Medicaid expansion.

On March 26 the Common Sense Institute of

ALEC examined the assumptions surrounding

Eristoff and Tax Foundation vice president

Medicaid expansion and concluded that promoting competition and consumer choice provide the cornerstone of real reform. The study was distributed to policymakers, stakeholders, the media and the public across the state. Key research from the study was used by policymakers during the debate. Undoubtedly,

New Jersey hosted a breakfast briefing with New Jersey State Treasurer Andrew P. SidamonJoseph Henchman. Both speakers emphasized New Jersey’s punishing tax burden. SidamonEristoff cautions the state not to become a regional outlier – making competition for incoming residents and businesses exceedingly tough – and described how the exodus of millionaires has deeply hurt the state. Henchman

New Yorkers – who pay some of the highest property taxes in the nation – were excited in 2011 with the enactment of a two-percent cap on local property-tax levy increases, nearly identical to the one the Empire Center had been pushing for some time. As a means to achieve that end, though, the New York Legislature inserted exclusions for rising pension costs. In 2013, those exclusions have undermined the cap. The

noted that while travelling, his standard response

Empire Center was the first to point out the

to complaints about onerous tax burdens is

flaw and finds in a new report, Pensions

usually, “New Jersey is worse.” Henchman made

push school tax cap to 4.6 percent, that the

some recommendations and cautioned against

allowable levy limit will be more than double

tax swapping. However, three years of balanced

the statutory limit this year – mostly driven

budgets without broad-based tax increases, two

by rising teacher pension costs. Additionally,

Finally, the Platte Institute is excited to launch

percent cap on annual municipal tax increases,

the report details why the pension exclusion

its podcast series later this summer to capitalize

and the reduced rate of growth in the state’s

makes it easiest to raise taxes in districts

on technology and engage a wider audience.

bonded debt are all indicators of an improving

where homeowners can least afford it.

economic climate.

the Medicaid expansion debate in Nebraska will be ongoing, and the Institute will continue to reject the expansion and support alternative reforms. Looking forward, the Institute is preparing to release two studies that promote reforming Nebraska’s public pension system.

SPN NEWS 10 May / JUNE 2013

State Policy Network

North Carolina


researchers have tackled, in recent months: payday lending, school vouchers, regulatory and auto insurance reform, renewable energy mandates, transportation priorities, the

In its fight against Common Core educational standards being implemented in North Carolina, the Civitas Institute has launched The website is dedicated to educating citizens about Common Core and the threat it poses to

Common Core education standards and state debt that lacks voter approval. Katherine Restrepo has joined JLF as health and human services policy analyst.


development camp for 250 high school

local control of schools. Beginning in 2012,

students from around the country. OCPA is

Civitas published research and articles

also looking forward to hosting the SPN 21st

showing how reforming state taxes could efforts, the Legislature has introduced bills to reform the tax system. On March 13, Civitas president Francis De Luca testified before the state House Committee on Elections about requiring voters to have photo idenitification. He refuted criticisms of photo ID, pointing out that the requirement would modernize

The Buckeye Institute participated in two prominent and well-attended debates on Medicaid expansion, at the City Club of Cleveland against Ohio’s former Medicaid

G. Batchelder identified the tipping point for whether Ohio could get out if it becomes

acquire one and participate more fully in

too expensive in the future. Buckeye alone


articulated both the legal and political arguments that if Ohio accepts the Medicaid expansion it would be stuck in the program. The Columbus Dispatch quoted Buckeye

recent issues of state-level conservative electoral success and the benefits to state governments of rejecting the Medicaid

president Robert Alt’s testimony referring to the expansion as the equivalent of the Hotel California. Buckeye also published and distributed to the House and Senate its policy memo, Medicaid Expansion: Myths Versus Realities, which addressed common misconceptions about expanding Medicaid.

Katherine Restrepo, JLF’s health and human services policy analyst


Durham, North Carolina, neighborhood. The Wall Street Journal quoted CJ’s lead investigative reporter in a report about a mountain man facing overly burdensome government regulations. JLF unveiled an

by Oregon’s leading newspaper as part of an “unlikely alliance” with the Urban League supporting legislation to deregulate the African hair-braiding industry. This was one of a series of legislative bills for which Cascade advocated as part of a larger agenda to help Oregonians earn an honest living and provide consumers with more choices by limiting, as Steve Buckstein testified, “the state’s desire to regulate everything.” The measure sailed through the Oregon House on a unanimous vote and awaits Senate approval. Cascade completed its series of Legislative Leadership Forums in the State Capitol and hosted a book signing for Tom Palmer, promoting his latest work, After the Welfare State. Cascade staff members have also traveled extensively in Oregon presenting policy lectures to

insurance exchanges tied to Obamacare. tax fraud scheme involving residents of one

Cascade Policy Institute was recognized

grassroots, civic and educational groups.

expansion and state-managed health JLF’s Carolina Journal helped uncover a


general counsel. House Speaker William

of each ballot and help those without an ID

president John Hood’s analysis in

City. See all of you there!

against the Ohio Hospital Association’s

stripping the expansion from the budget:

encountered John Locke Foundation

Annual Meeting this September in Oklahoma

director and at a Federalist Society event

the election process, safeguard the integrity

Readers of National Review have

sponsoring Four Star Leadership with General Tommy Franks, a week-long leadership

genuine achievement, parental rights and

boost the economy. In the wake of those

Oklahoma lawmakers and OCPA members gathered on April 10 at OCPA to hear Travis H. Brown, author of How Money Walks, discuss Oklahoma’s loss of $890 million in adjusted gross income over the past 15 years.

The Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs has had an exciting spring and is looking


forward to an even more eventful summer. In early May, Heritage Foundation president Jim DeMint spoke to the Council’s annual Citizenship Dinner and former Heritage Foundation president Ed Feulner, Ph.D.,

alternative state budget to save taxpayers

who also attended and spoke, was awarded

$1 billion over the next two years. JLF

the 2013 Citizenship Award. In July OCPA is SPN NEWS 11 MAY / June 2013

This spring Pennsylvania’s House of Representatives passed an historic piece of legislation to privatize the state’s 80-year old liquor system. Pennsylvania’s Lieutenant

State Policy Network

State Updates


Launched in early 2013 with the support of former U.S. Sen. Jim DeMint and other leading Commonwealth Foundation’s website has a new look!

Gov. publicly thanked Commonwealth Foundation for its role in its passage. The battle now moves to the Senate, and the CF team continues to work with legislators, activists and coalition partners to deliver consumers and taxpayers the choice and convenience they deserve. Additionally, CF has launched a new project: CyberSchoolsSave. org. Cyber schools are currently under attack in the Legislature. will educate and equip taxpayers to speak out on behalf of these schools of choice for more than 32,000 children in the Keystone State. Two of these students, Alyssa and Hannah, are featured in new videos that tell their personal stories about enjoying greater opportunities thanks to cyber schools. For more, visit the Foundation’s newly redesigned website,

South Carolina conservatives, Palmetto Policy Forum is a new voice focused on promoting best practice policy grounded in First Principles and building a broad-based, lasting citizen-collaboration network. PPF hit the ground running, leading off with its inaugural study, Transformation: What South


The Tennessee General Assembly finished its legislative session in late April, and it was a successful one for the Beacon Center. Beacon’s recommendations pursued by the Legislature included constitutional amendments to ban a state income tax and change how judges are chosen; cuts to the tax on stocks and bonds, beer tax, and food tax; a measure to curb policing for profit; and

Carolina Can Learn from Florida’s K–12

a bill to prevent the use of welfare benefits in

Reforms, a report that is already reshaping the

liquor stores and strip clubs. While the push

Palmetto State’s education landscape. PPF has also joined with like-minded organizations from around the country to support competitive federalism, advocating for innovative, state-based solutions to South Carolina’s challenges, especially in the fight against budget-busting, federal Medicaid expansion. PPF is committed to being a positive voice for liberty and making South Carolina a bright

to bring school choice to Tennessee stalled when Gov. Bill Haslam abruptly withdrew his limited voucher proposal, Beacon continues to pave the way for a meaningful program that benefits low- and middle-income families, with sights set on 2014. Finally, Beacon will soon release its eighth annual Pork Report, exposing waste, fraud and abuse by state and local governments.

beacon of freedom and policy innovation.


Learn more about us and our upcoming work at

Rhode Island The Texas Public Policy Foundation recently In April, the South Carolina Policy Council The state of Rhode Island may be defrauding itself! As part of its transparency effort, the Rhode Island Center for Freedom & Prosperity’s journalism wing, The Ocean State Current, published a series of stories highlighting obscene overtime payments to unionized government workers. At one medical facility, previously cited in a statewide Medicaid waste and fraud report, nurses routinely earned more than $250,000, largely from dubious overtime payments, setting up a scenario where the state could be defrauding itself – at taxpayer’s expense. At another facility, laundry workers similarly earned up to $123,000, putting a whole new definition on the term “laundering” of taxpayer dollars. The

launched Project Conflict Watch. For years, SCPC has contended that the public has a right to know who pays their politicians. South Carolina is the only state that doesn’t require elected officials to disclose private income, and lawmakers routinely use their power to enhance the profitability of their own businesses and practices. Unfortunately, the state’s weak ethics laws allow this practice. So, rather than waiting for a disclosure law, SCPC decided to put politicians on the spot by asking them to disclose their incomes voluntarily. We enlisted the help of our members to send disclosure forms to their elected officials. In the first two weeks, more than 20 lawmakers from both parties disclosed

Center itself continues to push its

their incomes, media outlets have begun

sales-tax reform concept and testified at a

questioning public officials who haven’t, and

May 15 house finance committee hearing on a

SCPC’s members feel – correctly – that they’re

bi-partisan bill.

achieving something big. SPN NEWS 12 May / JUNE 2013

participated in a roundtable on resisting the Obamacare Medicaid expansion with Texas Gov. Rick Perry and U.S. Senators John Cornyn and Ted Cruz. The Foundation continues to lead the way in developing alternatives to that expansion with its Save Texas Medicaid agenda. The Foundation is also leading the way on two critical action items in the 83rd Texas Legislature: advancing real school choice and enacting tax cuts for Texans. Finally, the Foundation is engaging for the first time in immigration policy reform, seeking a state-based solution for a longstanding Washington, D.C., failure.


During its annual fundraising dinner in early

April, Sutherland Institute welcomed Utah

State Policy Network



The Freedom Foundation organized another Free Washington Tour in early May, sending three teams of experts to 34 events around

The Thomas Jefferson Institute hosted with the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs another Leadership Round Table on Energy & Environment for 35 key leaders from around In April, Princeton University professor Robert P. George addressed guests at Sutherland Institute’s annual dinner.

Gov. Gary Herbert, state legislative leadership, and religious and community leaders to hear Princeton professor Robert P. George discuss three pillars of a decent and dynamic society. The pillars are: respect for the human person; the institution of the family; and a fair and effective system of law and government. To view his trenchant remarks, head to Youtube/Inn_V726rgI. The dinner was also an opportunity for Sutherland to release two new publications, Exceptional Utah: Leading America in Faith, Family and Freedom, available on Amazon, and The Sutherland Idea: The Cause of Freedom, available for free at


the country prior to the Heritage Foundation’s Resource Bank. Institute president Mike

celebrate its 20th Anniversary of fighting the good fight for liberty and prosperity in Vermont. The Institute welcomes you all to attend our dinner honoring (and roasting!) EAI founder John McClaughry. The June 19 event, which will feature two former governors, will take place in South Burlington, Vermont. See the Institute website for details. As Vermont’s 2013 legislative session progresses, EAI is aggressively publishing detailed, real-time Roll Call reports, analyzing and translating into digestible form the key votes cast by legislators. EAI has received positive feedback from members who are using this valuable

citizens to defend against tax increases during an upcoming special legislative session. They also explained the importance of this fall’s local elections, providing lists of offices up for election.

Thompson was lead-off witness at the first of five joint public hearings on the Institute’s tax restructuring idea, held by the Virginia Commission on Small Business and the Commission on Manufacturing. At the request of statewide candidates, the Institute offered policy suggestions and ideas for government and tax reform, improving education and environment and energy proposals. The monthly Center Right Coalition meetings, chaired by the Jefferson Institute, hosted the two Republican candidates for attorney general and the seven GOP candidates for lieutenant governor. The Institute began distribution of more than 5,000 brochures explaining the state’s new Education Scholarships Tax Credit to prospective scholarship donors.

Washington The Ethan Allen Institute prepares to

Washington State. The programs equipped

So far this year, Freedom Foundation experts

Washington Policy Center has already achieved some important policy victories in 2013 by expanding its state focus to also include city and county efforts. This year, proposed state tax increases have already been defeated following WPC recommendations: The Center used The Beacon Hill Institute’s STAMP model to project private-sector job loss on a proposed beer tax for microbrewers, and the bill was struck down. Democrat legislators also proposed reinstating a car-value tax. That bill was dropped following WPC’s analysis and an op-ed. Finally, in February, voters in Spokane, the state’s secondlargest city, enacted a WPC recommendation of a supermajority requirement for the city council to raise taxes, and in April the city council adopted WPC’s environmental priorities policy recommendation.


have spoken at more than 85 events and testified 18 times before legislative committees (mostly in Washington, but also in Oregon and Connecticut). Based on Freedom Foundation work, the Washington State Legislature passed bills creating personal liability for government officials who violate lobbying disclosure laws, requiring state environmental agencies to justify their decisions, and allowing privateschool online programs. In April, the Freedom Foundation’s Student Freedom Project brought together 550 people to hear CrossFit founder Greg Glassman speak about entrepreneurship.

Five years ago the Wyoming Policy Group was a raw start-up not knowing much of anything, but a few of us set to work in four areas: health care, a liberty rating for legislative votes, relieving Wyoming from entanglement in federal funding, and speech freedom. SPN and donors helped us out – and look what happened! A Health Care Freedom Amendment to the Wyoming Constitution has passed, a state version of Medicaid defeated, Medicaid expansion avoided,

tool to better understand what’s happening in Montpelier and to hold their legislators accountable. The Institute is also finding that

An audience of 550 packed the room to hear CrossFit founder Greg Glassman speak about entrepreneurship at a Freedom Foundation event.

these reports are popular things to share via email or social media. To read them, search “Roll Calls” at SPN NEWS 13 MAY / June 2013

State Policy Network

State Updates

an Affordable Healthcare Act exchange put

passages, and supplemental content from

on hold, and the tribes welcome in principle a

the NIV Stewardship Study Bible. The study

medical freedom zone on their land. The 2013

material is available in traditional print, DVD,

Key Liberty Votes publication is printed, the

digital formats, and on any smart device at

analysis of federal funds is in gear, the Citizens For more information, please visit

United case is history and Free Speech vs. FEC oral arguments before the Tenth Circuit Court are scheduled. WPG extends heartfelt thanks to you, SPN and donors, for backing us.


Ohio legislators have introduced The 1851 Center’s Workplace Freedom Amendment – model legislation that would make Ohio the nation’s next right-to-work state. In the Ohio Supreme Court, 1851 is arguing for standing in a case that will determine the fate of Ohio taxpayers’ legal standing to stop unconstitutional government spending and

Fox News’ Catherine Herridge and Gateway Pundit’s Jim Hoft (l) receiving AIM’s Reed Irvine Awards for outstanding journalism

The Allegheny Institute recently released

chairman Don Irvine said. “We at AIM have

comparison of Pittsburgh. The Benchmark

been most impressed with the excellent

City provides an approximation of national

reporting of Catherine Herridge, especially her

norms of city governing by taking four

unparalleled work in exposing and analyzing

regional hub cities from across the U.S. and

the events surrounding the terrorist attack…

amalgamating them to form a construct with

in Benghazi.” Irvine also praised Jim Hoft,

which to gauge performance. First done

the proprietor of “His dedication to a free America and his personal devotion to democracy that has led him to cover freedom movements…have propelled GatewayPundit into one of the country’s top resources for right-of-center news and commentary.”

cronyism, and potentially the legal standing

Precious Metal Dealers Act, 1851 is now defending this victory in the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, joined by the Institute for Justice and Pacific Legal Foundation. Finally, the Center is advancing an initiative petition to reform the city of Cincinnati’s costly

in 2004, when Pittsburgh was declared to be in financial distress, the update shows Pittsburgh has made progress in the areas of pension and debt, but remains well above the average of the four hub cities on per capita spending and taxation. We continue to monitor the local and state employment picture. In recent Briefs we note that neither Pennsylvania nor Pittsburgh has been able

of taxpayers in other states. After earning a trial court decision invalidating Ohio’s entire

an update of its Benchmark City performance

to sidestep the impact of forces pummelling What does it mean to be a steward – of the economy, the environment, personal wealth? The Acton Institute has recently produced Our Great Exchange, Your Life. His Gifts. Our

the national economy – Obamacare effects, the January tax hikes, and the regulatory onslaught coming from the D.C. governing apparatus.

Purpose, a seven-week small group study curriculum hosted by Pastor Jim Liske. It is

public employee pension system (the issue should appear on the November ballot) and

In May, American Enterprise Institute

providing necessary legal and educational

released two papers with important

support to stop Medicaid expansion in Ohio.

ramifications for state budgets. In Tying the Leviathan’s Hands: The false promise

Accuracy in Media presented Catherine Herridge of the Fox News Channel and Jim Hoft of the 2013 Reed Irvine Award for their outstanding contributions to investigative journalism and

of tax and expenditure limits, resident The Action Institute’s Our Great Exchange study materials are now available.

a journey to explore God’s purposes for the stewardship of all that he created. Our Great Exchange includes a comprehensive leader’s guide and study guide; 20-minute weekly

scholar Benjamin Zycher provides the most comprehensive look to date at the effects of Tax and Expenditure Limits on state budgets. Zycher uses several econometric techniques to examine the effect of TELs on spending, but none show TELs having any long-term effect on government size. Zycher explains

New Media in Washington, D.C. The Reed

video segments, each segment featuring

Irvine award is named for AIM’s founder,

a powerful story such as Chuck Colson’s

America’s first media watchdog. “Accuracy in

last extensive personal interview; daily

Heritage Foundation’s Jason Richwine

Media could not be more pleased about the

biblical insight and applications; and more

published the first-ever 50-state analysis of

recipients of this year’s Reed Irvine awards,”

than 75 minutes of additional video, Bible

public employee pay, analyzing the differential

SPN NEWS 14 May / JUNE 2013

why TELs fail to address underlying issues. Additionally, AEI’s Andrew Biggs and The

State Policy Network


between public sector pay and benefits and

during intimate networking luncheons. AFF

similar jobs in the private sector. They provide

is pleased to welcome Jason Riddle as its

specific data and rankings for each state. For

national chapter coordinator. Riddle has

copies of these papers or more information,

successfully led the Atlanta chapter, most

email or call 202-

recently with a debate between professors


about government-versus-market solutions to poverty.

Charlotte, Colorado Springs, Delaware,

From May 2-3, members of the American

Indianapolis, Sacramento and Wichita are

Legislative Exchange Council and members of the State Policy Network met in Oklahoma City for the Spring Task Force Summit. The meeting fostered academic discussion on state policies and explored research on today’s top policy issues. Members heard from Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin and had the opportunity to

Cato Institute president John Allison speaks to The Bastiat Society of Charleston.

Applications are now being accepted for the 2013-2014 Lights, Camera, Liberty! program providing think tanks grants and training for video production. The program begins with a workshop with Hollywood professionals in Los

all up and running. The Society urges you to contact them and become involved! New chapters are forming all the time and we expect to host more than 100 events this year, so please check for updates. You are also encouraged to contact us about starting a Bastiat Society chapter in your city. On a

visit the Oklahoma City National Memorial and

different note, the Bastiat Society is organizing


its inaugural Grand Tour weekend. This year’s retreat is in Antigua, Guatemala (July 18-21), where we will host a series of discussions on

economic issues affecting Central America and

America’s Future Foundation launched its

the United States. We will also tour the unique

Austin, Texas, chapter under the leadership

Universidad Francisco Marroquín – commonly

of Arif Panju, with remarks from Jeff Sandefer of the Acton School of Business. Chapters in Chicago, Pittsburgh, Minneapolis, New York and Dallas also held events. In Washington,

referred to as the “free market university.” Illinois Policy Institute’s Daniel Anthony discusses his video concepts with Hollywood professionals.

Space is limited to 15 people, so register soon!

Angeles this October and ends with the Film Festival event in New York City the following year at Atlas Network’s Liberty Forum and Freedom Dinner. Save the date for this year’s Liberty Forum and Freedom Dinner, Nov. 13-14, in New York City where the $100,000 prize for the Templeton Freedom Award will be announced and think tank leaders will compete in the Think Tank Shark Tank competition for a $25,000 prize. Atlas’ 2013 Think Tank MBA and Think Tank Leadership

James Antle discusses his new book Devouring Freedom on C-SPAN.

D.C., AFF partnered with The Heritage Foundation to welcome Jim DeMint as the new president during a special event for young professionals. A book launch event, in conjunction with the Institute for Humane

Training graduates enjoy complimentary registration and accommodations. Visit to learn more. Sign up for Atlas’s bi-weekly e-newsletter Highlights for the latest announcements about grant and training opportunities for think tanks.

In May, the Beacon Hill Institute weighed in on the ongoing tax debate in Massachusetts between Gov. Deval Patrick and the Legislature. Using its dynamic scoring STAMP model, BHI found that the governor’s package would be more harmful than the more modest increase proposed by the Legislature. The governor’s plan would raise $1.876 billion but would shrink the disposable income of Massachusetts residents by $1.2 billion and lower investment by $120 million. It would also prospectively eliminate about 18,000 jobs. The Legislature’s proposal would raise $ $439 million in the first year but only reduce employment by 2,400 jobs. The report

Studies, featured James Antle discussing

concluded, “While the legislature’s more

Devouring Freedom and was shown nationally

modest proposal produces less economic

on C-SPAN Book TV. Members were provided

harm, lawmakers should recognize that linking

the unique opportunity to hear from Alex Chafuen, Roger Ream, Stacie Rumenap,

The Bastiat Society is thrilled to announce

Julie Grisolano, Courtney Myers and others

that its chapters in Charleston, South Carolina, SPN NEWS 15 MAY / June 2013

infrastructure funding to taxing products such as tobacco and gasoline, whose consumption is falling and will continue to fall in the future,

State Policy Network

State Updates

is a tenuous proposition at best. The governor

Join the Center for a retrospective on the

is growing rapidly and now has subscribers

and legislature need to seek innovative

education reform movement at CER’s

nationwide: Sign up

alternatives to fund the state’s infrastructure needs.”

conference, Education Reform: Before it was Cool. You won’t want to miss the gala and

for our quarterly Health Freedom Watch which is available by mail or at

EdReformies – CER’s unique honor bestowed upon leaders in the field of education reform. CAPITAL RESEARCH CENTER

Capital Research Center has great new studies on state issues. The April Organization Trends, written by Susan Myrick of North Carolina’s Civitas Institute, reports on a state-wide network of left-wing nonprofits whose ruthless (and potentially illegal) partisanship was exposed when a strategy memo leaked. March’s Labor Watch analyzes how Gov. Bobby Jindal achieved school reform in Louisiana despite the teachers’ union. The May Organization Trends warns about two foundations, MacArthur and Annie E. Casey, that are pushing states to go

This year’s theme is the Classics of Education Reform, in Rat Pack style, featuring musical performances by The Reformers – the only musical group made of leading reform activists. Please join us as we look back on the Center’s last two decades and pay tribute to our founders. We will also honor former U.S. Education Secretary William J. Bennett; California charter pioneer Yvonne Chan; online-learning adventurer Barbara Dreyer; philanthropists Jim, Jan and Tracy Gleason; the accomplished Deborah McGriff and entrepreneur Michael Moe.

continues to battle Obamacare by focusing on the Obamacare implementation centers,

brings together a diverse set of speakers and participants eager to discuss issues of individual liberty and limited government. Over

the state and federally-facilitated Exchanges,

control over health care. The Council has been helping individuals and groups in Michigan, Idaho, South Dakota, Mississippi

Heather Curry at

defense. Through this new interview series,

hosted by CRB editor Charles R. Kesler, the

was founded. Please visit to see conversations with Bill Bennett, John Yoo, Mark Helprin, Steve Hayward and others.

Competitive Enterprise Institute is pleased to welcome Coley Jackson as its new Vice President of Development. Previously, Jackson

CEI’s annual gala dinner will be held Thursday, June 20 in Washington, D.C., featuring the Honorable Rand Paul One of four billboards against the state Exchange in the Twin Cities of Minnesota.

and other states to fight Exchange legislation. CCHF created useful resources including: 15 REASONS: Oppose Obama’s Health Insurance Exchanges, a Free States vs. Obamacare States map, and colorful diagrams explaining an Exchange: CCHFDiagrams. Council president Twila

Mark your calendar for The Center for

sense now needs an uncommonly firm

major gift operations at the Mercatus Center.

to explore the city, as well as a special evening

information about Cato University, please write

alike prefer the new to the true. Even common

for Prosperity and served as the director of

philosophy. There are also unique opportunities

lectures, books and evening events. For more

in an age when professors and politicians

directed a development team for Americans

including history, economics, law and political

price of which covers all meals, receptions,

and classic arguments is not easy, especially

highlighting the Minnesota Exchange Board’s

minded topics across a diversity of subjects,

a discount of $120 off the registration fee, the

of Books. To understand enduring principles

CCHF launched a billboard campaign

variety of educational forums tackling liberty-

pleased to offer State Policy Network members

started in the pages of the Claremont Review

which are its Achilles’ heel. For example,

the course of four days, guests will attend a

event featuring U.S. Sen. Rand Paul. Cato is

American life, politics, and political philosophy

enduring principles upon which this country Citizens’ Council for Health Freedom

premiere educational event, this program

about the timely and timeless issues of

day and their relationship to the simple and

in the heart of Washington, D.C. As Cato’s

continues in video form the conversations

for discussing the most important issues of the for the complete stories.

28-Aug. 2, at the Cato Institute’s headquarters

the American Mind, an interview series that

Claremont Institute hopes to create a forum

soft on the most violent juvenile criminals. Visit

This year, Cato University will be held July

The Claremont Institute recently launched

Brase’s Health Freedom Minute radio program

Education Reform’s 20th Anniversary

is heard daily on 345 stations in 39 states.

Celebration on Oct. 9 in Washington, D.C.

The weekly CCHF Health Freedom eNews SPN NEWS 16 May / JUNE 2013

as key note speaker. It’s also the event at which CEI bestows its Julian L. Simon

Coley Jackson, CEI’s vice president of development

Memorial Award. The fun event theme this year is James Bond films. Tickets and information: The Institute is now accepting applications for the CEI Warren T. Brookes Journalism Fellowship, which begins in October 2013. The one-year fellowship provides journalists opportunity to improve their knowledge of free market principles and limited government through

State Policy Network


interaction with CEI policy experts. Find us on

Center’s Breitbart Award by Hating Breitbart

Facebook and Twitter.

director Andrew Marcus. EAGNews’ video exposé on a “cultural sensitivity” teacher


Building a Legacy of Liberty

Ten Things You Might Not Know About Talent Market are: 1. All of our services are free. 2. Talent Market is a special project of DonorsTrust. 3. We work exclusively with

training program in Wisconsin has garnered over 33,000 views on YouTube. The video explained how the state-funded CREATE Wisconsin program is heavily focused on the controversial concept of “white privilege.” Olson appeared on The Glenn Beck Program to discuss this topic.

free-market oriented 501(c)3 organizations.

U.S. Sen. Rubio delivered a communications policy speech at FSF's Annual Conference

4. We rock at long division. 5. Talent Market

therefore we, as policymakers, must put the

raises its own funding and does not receive support through or from the general operations of DonorsTrust. 6. Since Talent Market does not charge clients for its services, it is only through the generosity of supporters that it can continue its important work. 7. Since its inception in August 2009, Talent Market has assisted more than 110 nonprofits. 8. TM focuses on mid/senior and executive-level openings. 9. Talent Market believes that children are our future; teach them well and let them lead the way. 10. We have placed more than 150 individuals in critical positions.

right policies in place for broadband networks, Foundation for Economic Education welcomes aboard Richard Lorenc as its new director of programs and alumni relations. Lorenc comes to FEE from the Institute for Truth in Accounting and the Charles Koch

coordinator. The Foundation’s 2013 summer seminars are shaping up to be a huge success, with more than 1,200 applications and over 800 students accepted, both records. Please participate in The Arena, a monthly

org/i-object to participate in the new video contest for students based on the classic I, Pencil essay by Leonard Read.

What do mothers of school-age children think of private school choice? Their reactions should make supporters even more optimistic about the future of Milton Friedman’s legacy

idea. Last month, The Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice released its

Schooling in America Survey, asking adults and school moms nationwide how they feel about such topics as vouchers, private schools and the state of K–12 education. The survey is available at introduce, grow or defend school choice, The

market after insurance was taken off the

Friedman Foundation provides a number

collective bargaining table. EAGnews Founder

of services to its state and local partners,

Kyle Olson appeared on the Fox Business findings. EAGnews produced a four-part series

digital world.”

schoolingsurvey. Also, for those working to

due to competition being injected into the

Network’s Stossel program to discuss our

the opportunities that will come along with the

intern, as the new content and editorial

classical liberals/libertarians. Finally, visit FEE.

how districts have saved millions of dollars

regulations don’t deprive the middle class of

welcomes aboard Steve Patterson, a former

to help readers explore issues of concern to

health insurance in Wisconsin to demonstrate

ecosystem to ensure that legacy laws and

Institute’s Liberty@Work program. FEE also

debate feature on designed

EAGnews produced a report on school

for wireless Internet, and for the global Internet

At The Free State Foundation’s recent Annual Conference, his first speech outside the U.S. Senate on communications policy, Sen. Marco Rubio gave the keynote address

including timely research, a speakers bureau and graphic design assistance. To see the full list of services provided, and to utilize them, visit And for those on Twitter, remember to follow Team Friedman

before 150 attendees. In a clarion call,

@edchoice for important updates on school

Rubio advocated adoption of pro-growth,


pro-consumer, free market-oriented communications policies. In commenting on the importance of the Conference’s theme, EAG’s Kyle Olson appeared on Stossel to discuss Gov. Scott Walker’s collective bargaining reforms.

Completing the Transition to a Digital World:

on the national epidemic of inappropriate

Rubio said, “It matters because the future

sexual relationships between teachers and

of telecommunications and the services that

students. It ran exclusively on TheBlaze. The

the middle class uses are going digital. The

coverage was nominated for the Franklin

future is an Internet Protocol-based world. And

How to Finish the Job and Why It Matters,

SPN NEWS 17 MAY / June 2013

Digital Learning Now!, an initiative of the

Foundation for Excellence in Education,

has released the 2012 Digital Learning Report Card. The report measures each of the

nation’s 50 states against the 10 Elements

State Policy Network

State Updates

of High Quality Digital Learning and offers

size and scope of government. The bills deal

would be a costly mistake and would make it

a comprehensive state-by-state analysis of

with ending corporate handouts, empowering

laws and policies that embrace new models,

individuals, taxing fairly and not overspending.

even harder for those currently on the program

utilize technology to meet the needs of all

So far, 12 Congressmen are either sponsors

students and eliminate the barriers that inhibit

or co-sponsors and bills have been introduced

innovation in K–12 education. The 2012 Report Card shows that states are advancing student-centric reforms, reducing barriers to blended learning, and encouraging the use of technology to offer a more personalized college- and career-ready education. In 2012, more than 700 bills involving digital learning were considered and more than 152 were signed into law, with nearly every state enacting a bill that advanced a digital learning policy. To view the report, visit

in the U.S. House. FreedomWorks is also heavily engaged in the Texas school choice fight. It held a grassroots summit for hundreds of activists April 25–27, culminating with a rally at the Capitol. On July 5, FreedomWorks will host Free The People in Salt Lake City, an event celebrating the entrepreneurs in the legislative, commercial and social arenas. The event is almost sold out, but tickets are still available at

to get care. States should use this opening to demand more flexibility over Medicaid. The Institute also wrote a paper on 21st Century Health Care Options for the States and organized briefings and conference calls to help states develop alternative solutions. In addition, Grace-Marie Turner was named by U.S. House Speaker John Boehner as one of his three nominees to the Long-Term Care Commission. Turner served in 2005-06 on the Medicaid Commission during the Bush administration so this will be a new opportunity to inject market-based policy solutions into the debate.

The Fund for American Studies has The Fraser Institute has awarded its Addington Prize in Measurement to a trio of researchers from Stanford University and the University of Chicago for their paper Measuring Economic Policy Uncertainty. Scott R. Baker and Nicholas A. Bloom (both Stanford University) and Steven J. Davis (Univ. of Chicago Booth School of Business) received the award for developing the first rigorous analytical framework for measuring the impact of economic policy uncertainty in the U.S. The Addington Prize, which comes with a $10,000 award, recognizes a person or team who has developed a new, interesting and important concept in public policy, exemplifying the Institute’s motto, “If it matters, measure it.” To read the prize-winning paper, visit To stay abreast of the Fraser Institute’s research, sign up for its

acquired the Phillips Foundation’s Robert

The Heartland Institute this spring published and distributed 100,000 copies of a new

Novak Journalism Fellowship Program.

edition of The Mad, Mad, Mad World of

The new organizational arrangement was

Climatism by policy advisor Steve Goreham to

introduced, along with this year’s seven Novak Fellowship recipients, at an annual dinner on May 7 at the National Press Club. The event

educators, business and civic leaders, judges, environmental journalists and elected officials

honored Fred Barnes. Also in attendance were Brit Hume and Steve Hayes. On May 3, the outgoing class of Capital Semester students attended a commencement ceremony at TFAS headquarters. Tom Palmer, Ph.D., of the Atlas Network delivered the keynote address. A new TFAS class of students will be arriving in Washington, D.C., this month to participate in one of the five U.S. institutes. More than

The Heartland Institute this spring published and distributed 100,000 copies of a new edition of The Mad, Mad, Mad World of Climatism.

200 students will attend TFAS international programs in Prague and Hong Kong. TFAS looks forward to its 46th Anniversary Annual Conference, which will be held June 20–21 in

conjunction with its summer programs.

free e-newsletter, Fraser Insight, at Insight@

across the country. If you did not get a copy, call 312-377-4000 and ask for one. Heartland enclosed with the book a 10-minute DVD titled Unstoppable Solar Cycles: Rethinking Global Warming. The arguments Goreham makes are

not just opinions but are based on the work of hundreds of scientists across the world who challenge the theory of manmade global

On April 15 FreedomWorks launched The New Fair Deal, a legislative effort to bring

States have been the center of action on Obamacare as battles about Medicaid expansion dominated 2013 legislative

together liberty-minded Congressmen and

sessions. The Galen Institute presented

tens of thousands of grassroots activists to

testimonies and wrote five papers explaining

write–and pass–legislation that shrinks the

the 12 top reasons why expanding Medicaid SPN NEWS 18 May / JUNE 2013

warming. Graphs and scientific data from peer reviewed papers are used to show that manmade influences are actually only a very small part of Earth’s climate. The evidence is available for all to see in a clear and compelling format.

State Policy Network


are paying to fund federal programs like

principles that fortify the free market, limited

defense, health care and entitlements. To use

government, and individual liberty have been

the Calculator and get the latest news, blog In March The Heritage Foundation published Obamacare and the Medicaid Expansion: How Does Your State Fare? This report shows that 40 of 50 states are projected to

and video updates from The Independent Institute right from your iPhone, please visit to download your free MyGovCost App today!

instrumental to the conservative movement and are critical to the future prosperity of our nation.” Besides promoting creators and innovation at its 8th annual World Intellectual Property Day in Washington, IPI policy experts appeared on airwaves nationwide

see increases in costs due to the Medicaid expansion and the majority of states to see

warning of the Internet sales tax threat to

costs exceed savings when the federal match

small businesses. “We need IPI more than

rate is lowered after the first three years. Heritage legal expert Hans von Spakovsky published Mandatory Voter Registration: How Universal Registration Threatens Electoral Integrity and scholar T. Elliot Glaiser authored Internet Sales Tax: Here Come the Auditors, which explains how small business would have to send monthly tax payments to up to 46 states and be subject to audits from 46 state tax authorities should the Congress pass an Internet sales-tax bill. Heritage also held its 2013 Resource Bank Meeting, which convened think tank CEOs, policy experts, top social media professionals, investigative journalists, activists and development professionals.

The Institute for Humane Studies is excited to welcome more than 50 interns to more than 30 state think tanks and policy organizations this summer through the SPN/IHS Koch Summer

ever,” said Steve Forbes. “IPI consistently puts forth those analyses and innovative ideas necessary to promote hope, growth and opportunity for all.”

Fellow Program. Interns will help to advance their organizations’ missions by doing policy research, writing and communication tasks. To draw additional top liberty-friendly talent to your organization, list your job and internship openings and events on, the online jobs and opportunities bank for the liberty network. Create an account on the site to post directly, or email listings to Admin@ Finally, through its Find

Working with conservative students who refuse to let liberalism dominate college campuses, the Intercollegiate Studies Institute wrapped up the spring semester with its usual lineup of all-star speakers who addressed today’s most pressing issues. After preparing for the

Scholars service IHS can connect you to the right liberty-friendly scholars and experts to speak at events, author papers, provide expert testimony, join advisory boards, give quotes and more. Visit for

Today the U.S. national debt stands at almost $17 trillion, with recent reports suggesting

more information or email to submit a request.

that the Obamacare mandate will add more than $6 trillion to the deficit over the next 75

On behalf of ISI, Charles Murray addresses a full house at Princeton University.

years. A crucial piece of the puzzle to end out-of-control spending is to put these gigantic numbers into perspective. Understanding that visualizing these huge numbers isn’t easy, The Independent Institute has created the Government Cost Calculator at MyGovCost .org to make it easier. Reshaping how Americans think about national spending and debt, the Calculator personalizes government

“It is a true honor to be a part of IPI’s silver anniversary celebration,” said U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz at the Institute for Policy Innovation’s 25th Anniversary Gala, May 2 in Dallas, where he served as keynote speaker. “IPI’s efforts over the last 25 years to promote

spending to show exactly how much you

school year at ISI’s Leaders Retreat, student leaders at New York University organized an event to confront the “birth dearth” with Weekly Standard’s Jonathan Last, author of the new book What to Expect When No One’s Expecting. In the wake of student government attempts to quash an ISI-affiliated religious group at Johns Hopkins University, ISI’s speakers bureau helped student leaders bring Michael Novak to campus to address religious liberty. And at Washington College, Jonah Goldberg led a discussion on the future of

Download your free MyGovCost iPhone app today!

American conservatism. Other headline events Sen. Ted Cruz speaks at IPI's 25th Anniversary Gala in Dallas.

SPN NEWS 19 MAY / June 2013

included lectures by Arthur Brooks at Duke, Charles Kesler at Brigham Young University, and Charles Murray at Princeton.

State Policy Network

State Updates

explained, gives students more flexibility, creating change for the better in higher education. Leef has been concerned about the declining value of higher education for more than a decade and authored a research paper On April 16, The Jesse Helms Center hosted Maine Heritage Policy Center CEO J. Scott

in 2006 on the topic, The Overselling of Higher

dish or dessert to share. In 2012, there were more than 900 conservatives in attendance. Sponsorship opportunities are available. To attend, RSVP for your parking pass at Hope to see you there!


Moody as the spring BB&T Program on the Moral Foundations of Free Enterprise lecture series speaker. Also in April, the Helms Center

In March, Manhattan Institute senior fellow,

presented a portion of its curriculum from its nationally recognized Free Enterprise

Avik Roy, launched a road tour to educate Judicial Watch released documents in April indicating the USDA is working with the Mexican government to promote participation by illegal aliens in the U.S. food stamp program. The records include a Spanishlanguage flyer provided to the Mexican Embassy by the USDA which states: “You

Maine Heritage Policy CEO J. Scott Moody (l) talks with a college student during The Jesse Helms Center’s BB&T Lecture in April

Leadership Challenge at the North Carolina Future Business Leaders of America’s annual State Leadership Conference. In total, more than 300 high school and college students participated in these two events. The Free Enterprise Leadership Challenge will hold five residential summer programs for high school students this summer at Hillsdale College, Palm Beach Atlantic University, Northwood University-Texas campus, Wingate University and Campbell University. For more Free Enterprise Leadership Challenge information visit

Tom Fitton, Judicial Watch president

voters and policymakers about the long-term implications of the Medicaid expansion. Partnering with the Mackinac Center, Roy’s tour kicked off in Michigan with several media appearances on local and state radio programs and an op-ed in The Detroit News entitled, Medicaid Isn’t Only Option For Michigan. The Mackinac Center

need not divulge information regarding your immigration status in seeking this benefit for your children.” In the wake of the Boston Marathon bombings, JW made national

hosted a forum where Roy addressed a full house of attendees on policy alternatives to the state Medicaid expansion. After the

headlines for disclosing the fact that one of

luncheon, he met one-on-one with state

the Chechen terrorists who carried out the

policymakers to further educate them on this

attack could have been deported after a 2009

hot-button issue that will be decided by the

arrest; however, the Obama administration

end of June. Manhattan’s new book coming

declined. In March, JW sued the U.S.

in July, The Beholden State: California’s

Justice Department for records detailing

Lost Promise and How to Recapture It, is a

communications between the Department

selection of articles by City Journal authors.

and an ACORN spin-off regarding a taxpayer-

funded promotions campaign to register welfare recipients.

The Mercatus Center has kept busy this spring, rolling out its third edition of the

George Leef, director of research for The

John W. Pope Center for Higher Education

Come ring in America’s independence with

Freedom in the 50 States index, which

Policy, spoke April 15 at the Atlas Network’s

us! The Leadership Institute and other

International Education Forum. The event,

sponsoring conservative organizations

where visitors can explore more than 200

co-hosted by The Friedman Foundation for

will host the 42nd National Fourth of July

different policy variables. Co-author Jason

Educational Choice, attracted more than 100

Conservative Soiree July 4 at Bull Run

Sorens gave over 70 friends in Columbus a

scholars and reformers. At the Forum, Leef

Regional Park in Centreville, Virginia, from

special preview during an event co-hosted

explained how higher education has been

11:30 a.m. until 3 p.m. The Soiree is a free

with Opportunity Ohio. Mercatus scholars

oversold and predicted that technological

event which will feature a balloon artist,

also kept active in state capitols, with senior

changes – including online education – will

airbrush tattoo artist and a moon bounce

research fellow Patrick McLaughlin testifying

give students more options outside of the

for kids; a bluegrass band; and delicious

on regulation and occupational licensing

traditional “college bubble.” Technology, he

barbeque with snow cones. Bring a side

before the Pennsylvania House State

SPN NEWS 20 May / JUNE 2013

includes a vastly expanded interactive website

State Policy Network


Government Committee. As part of a Citizen

wrote a comprehensive study on Medicaid

with Pacific Legal Foundation in a federal

Economic Education seminar co-hosted with

expansion in Florida and testified before the

lawsuit to challenge the U.S. Fish and Wildlife

the Bluegrass Institute, scholars Matthew

Florida House and Senate Select Committees

Service’s authority to regulate Utah prairie

Mitchell, Maurice McTigue and John Garen presented on how to increase Kentucky’s competitiveness. In March, Charles Blahous, Mercatus senior research fellow and Public Trustee for Social Security and Medicare, released a thorough analysis of the choices facing state governments in regard to Medicaid expansion.

on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act about Medicaid expansion’s impact. Herrick is also writing a study on Medicaid expansion in Michigan in conjunction with the Mackinac Center. NCPA’s Chairman’s Council will be held June 2-6 at Mohonk Mountain Resort in New Paltz, N.Y. Rudy Giuliani will keynote this year’s event.

dogs. The animals are protected under the Endangered Species Act even though the service estimates that more than 40,000 animals exist in Utah. Rodents have caused severe damage to parks, a golf course, airport, vacant lots and the city cemetery. The case was highlighted on Stossel on the Fox Business Network. A SCOTUSblog survey indicates that between May 19, 2009 and Aug. 15, 2012, PLF filed 37 amicus briefs at the U.S. Supreme Court and had an acceptance

With free legal assistance from the National The Moving Picture Institute is delighted to announce that Juche Strong, a film from MPI fellow Rob Montz, screened to a packed house at the Cato Institute this April (JucheStrong. com). Juche Strong is a bold documentary that examines North Korea’s propaganda machine. Featured in The Economist, BBC World News, and other media, Juche Strong is shaping the debate about North Korea’s national ideology at a vital time – and is available for state groups to screen now. MPI is also pleased to announce The Project, a documentary from MPI fellow and Emmy winner Adam Ciralsky about a private militia formed to combat Somali piracy. The film – praised by The Hollywood Reporter and The Daily Beast – premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival this April. Visit to learn about MPI fellowships and more. Contact

Right to Work Foundation, four Michigan

workers forced to financially support a union in order to keep their jobs moved to intervene

rate of 20 percent, placing PLF third in the nation and first among constitutionally-oriented organizations in terms of its influence at the “cert.-stage.”

in a federal lawsuit challenging Michigan’s newly-enacted Right to Work law. Michigan’s Right to Work law frees workers from paying union dues to keep their jobs. In February, two unions and a union-affiliated group sued claiming that federal labor law preempts Michigan’s Right to Work law. However, federal labor law explicitly gives states the power to pass Right to Work laws. Foundation staff attorneys have successfully defended state Right to Work laws from union-backed challenges several times, and the U.S. Supreme Court has long held that state Right to Work laws are constitutional. If granted, the workers’ motion to intervene would make them full participants in the lawsuit. to arrange screenings and

This year, Reason Foundation’s Reason magazine celebrates 45 years of free minds and free markets with a series of receptions around the country. and editor-in-chief Nick Gillespie criticized “America’s Pot-astrophe” on The Colbert Report while associate editor Mike Riggs debated What’s Next for Weed? at an America’s Future Foundation panel. U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions and U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan wrote an open letter to U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood urging the administration to reject

recommend filmmakers for fellowships and

the $5 billion loan request for a Mojave Desert


train project. The Congressmen built their case primarily on findings from the Reason Cedar City, Utah, has been overrun with prairie dogs, prompting local citizens to join

The National Center for Policy Aanalysis

study, The XpressWest High-Speed Rail Line from Victorville to Las Vegas: A Taxpayer Risk Analysis. Find out more at and

launched its Health Care Roundtable. The goal of the HCRT is to increase communication and discussion of real world solutions to health-care reform with policymakers. NCPA

Opportunity Ohio wins! Spark Freedom

is developing a Tax Analysis Center that will

assisted Matt Mayer and Opportunity Ohio

employ the dynamic analysis and proprietary

with message development for a video series

life-cycle software developed by economist

to help deep-six an energy-surtax bill. At

Larry Kotlikoff, producing a truer picture of tax policy proposals than is currently available to policymakers. Senior fellow Devon Herrick

PLF attorney Jonathan Wood speaks at the news conference in Cedar City, Utah, to announce a federal lawsuit regarding the Utah prairie dog. SPN NEWS 21 MAY / June 2013

The Heritage Foundation Resource Bank in April, Corey Burres spoke on Delivering the Freedom Message through video, storytelling

State Policy Network

State Updates

The Steamboat Institute’s Fifth Annual Freedom Conference will be August 23–24 in Steamboat Springs, Colo. Keynote dinner speakers will be Liz Cheney and former Vice President Dick Cheney. Registration includes the gondola ride to keynote dinner at the Spark Freedom’s creative director Corey Burres (r) was part of the Delivering the Freedom Message panel discussion at the Resource Bank Meeting.

summit of Steamboat Ski Area.

As a sponsor of the Conservative Political Action Conference 2013, there was no shortage of activity or exposure for Young America’s Foundation at the annual event. In addition to having exhibit booths, the Foundation hosted a student dinner with guest speaker Congressman Dana Rohrabacher and a luncheon with guest speaker Katie Pavlich. Late in March, more than 150 attendees

and marketing. During a different session at Resource Bank, Nicole Williams and Stanford D. Swim highlighted five examples of excellent creative work from state-based think tanks. Their presentations were representative of the quality of communications training Spark Freedom offers. On May 23, Likeable Social Media CEO Dave Kerpen led a Spark Session, SF’s monthly video-cast. View this event in the archives on the Spark Freedom website. For more details or to request the SF newsletter please email

As Students For Liberty’s work gained momentum in the U.S., students from the rest of the world took note and wanted to replicate the model in their home countries. In 2011 SFL launched its first international operation with European Students For Liberty and the first ESFL Conference drew more than 150 attendees to Lueven, Belgium. In March 2013 the 2nd ESFL Conference drew a record-setting 350 students from all over Europe, Asia and North America. Now Students For Liberty

is spreading to South America as well, with the addition of Estudantes Pela Liberdade in Brazil and Estudiantes Por La Libertad in the

State Budget Solutions continues to provide up-to-date reporting, analysis and solutions on state and local budget issues. In April, SBS president Bob Williams authored an

Spanish-speaking regions of the Americas. EPL held its first conference in Brazil last fall and EPLL just completed conferences in Venezuela and Ecuador.

burdens as a result of growth in health care spending and the likelihood of federal funding reductions for state and local governments. Federalism in Action, a project of SBS, recently re-launched its website and is working with state legislators around the nation, providing tools and solutions to keep government local. In May, Federalism in Action co-sponsored an event for state legislators in Oklahoma City, with more than 20 state lawmakers in attendance.

to hear from Congressman Tom Tancredo, documentary filmmaker Ann McElhinney, Hillsdale College professor Burt Folsom,Ph.D., and actor Joseph Phillips among others. Leading conservatives addressed campuses nationwide through the Foundation’s

Krauthammer spoke to a packed house at the

and urging lawmakers to consider the long-term

GAO report that warned of looming financial

the Foundation’s Reagan Ranch Center

Grosse Pointe South High School, Charles

discussing problems with Medicaid expansion

Williams also issued a statement on a recent

from 14 states and 36 schools gathered at

lecture program. Rick Santorum addressed

editorial that appeared in The Huffington Post

implications and costs of such a decision.

U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum addresses more than 1,000 students at Grosse Pointe South High School.

This spring the Tax Foundation’s annual announcement of Tax Freedom Day – the day on which Americans have earned enough to pay their taxes and start working for themselves – generated hundreds of media citations from every state in the country. Though national Tax Freedom Day is April 18, check our your state’s Tax Freedom Day at This spring the Foundation also launched its new Advisory Committee on State Tax Policy, a new forum for supporters to discuss Tax Foundation research efforts. For more information, contact Joe Henchman at Henchman@taxfoundation .org.

SPN NEWS 22 May / JUNE 2013

University of the Cumberlands, Newt Gingrich debated Robert Gibbs at Penn State, and Stony Brook University hosted John Stossel.

Great and effective Boards from Page 1

catch one here or there, they either will not stay or will check in only occasionally to see how things are working out. No incentive exists to do more if influence is limited. What happens when an existing board is short on talent, thinks small and is not up to the task at hand? What if the board determines that their job includes determining and approving institute tactical maneuvers, newsletter content, media releases and staffing decisions? Either CEOs will come and go quickly, or someone will park in the job content to manage “what is.” Building or rebuilding a great board – hopefully in concert with existing members – is essential to successfully advancing organizational missions. Assembling a board committee to look for candidates who fit your institute’s needs may be a good first step. Here are a few considerations for CEOs and board members alike.

Set the tone, expectations and agenda for meetings • Inform, but mostly engage the board. • Minimize trivia and monologues. Get to the core issues that shape success. • Good board members shun micromanagement, but they insist on meaningful outcomes – clear measures of success. Provide them. • Prepare an agenda and send out reports and background material well in advance. Expect board members to come to the meeting prepared.

Accept course correction • Dreams die hard. Sometimes a board will say “no” or “not now” or

Choose Wisely

“scale back.” If you hired the right board, accept their wisdom and

• “Hire” board members who wholeheartedly support the institute’s mission, are not afraid of appropriate change and will have the institute’s back when ideological opponents try to inflict public wounds.

learn from it. Your board calls the shots, regardless. • Leaders see some part of the future. Dig in to the knowledge represented on your board, especially if you and your board disagree.

• When it comes to talent for your board, think and ask as big as you mission indicates you must. If you intend to advance freedom in meaningful ways and soon, choose board members whose abilities outpace your own.

• Be willing to answer tough questions. Be concerned if you don’t

• The best board members are busy, because so many people want a piece of their time. Make your request stand out related to the impact of your mission and the meaningful direction and decisions you need board members to help you make.

responsibility alone. A wise, capable board is the wind under our wings.

• “Hire” the diverse talent you need on the board to advance your mission.

get them. Our shoulders are not broad enough, our talent not deep enough, our experience not comprehensive enough, to undertake our breathtaking

Besides, the greatest testament you as a CEO can leave behind is an institute that can prosper when you leave. That’s possible with a great board who understands their precious stewardship role. In his insightful book, Managing the Nonprofit Organization, Peter

• Character matters! People with bad baggage, spotlight affliction or an Eeyore complex make lousy board members.

Drucker notes that government cannot and should not “discharge all

• Be straightforward about expectations for personal giving and fundraising. Every voting board member should be a donor. Each should be willing to raise money for the institute they govern – with very few exceptions.

American society and of the American tradition.”

social tasks.” He says the nonprofit sector is “central to the quality of life in America, central to citizenship, and indeed carries the values of

Indeed, our particular part of the nonprofit sector is central to the survival of a free, prosperous and civil society. Let’s recruit the best talent in America to serve alongside us as we discharge our breathtaking

Provide consistent information and context


• Effective board members need context and clarity. Prepare thorough, but concise, updates or background information as needed, and well in advance of decisions that need to be made unless extraordinary circumstances do not allow for this. • The CEO should talk with board members between meetings. Build a respectful, open relationship. SPN NEWS 23 MAY / JUNE 2013

Lynn Harsh is vice president of strategy at State Policy Network. Write her at

1655 North Fort Myer Drive Suite 360 Arlington, VA 22209

SPN News May/June 2013  
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