Dozens of union-backed community activists filed through the lobby of Omni William Penn Hotel midday Friday to protest a private meeting of one of America’s most effective and controversial policymaking machines.
The spring summit of the American Legislative Exchange Council, a Washington-based libertarian nonprofit organization, drew about 400 state lawmakers from across the country and 100 industry stakeholders to the Downtown hotel to debate proposed “model” legislation in line with ALEC’s free-market philosophy.
The event spurred almost 120 protesters, about 60 of whom made their way into the hotel and paraded through its lobby with a sound system amplifying their chants before police asked them to leave, Department of Public Safety spokeswoman Sonya Toler said.
“Hey, hey, ho, ho, ALEC’s greed has got to go,” shouted protesters; among them were union members, college students and activists from advocacy groups such as Thomas Merton Center, Pittsburghers for Public Transit, Alliance for Police Accountability and Fight for $15.
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