Sen. Chuck Grassley on Saturday suggested that people should boycott Coca-Cola because the company decided not to renew its membership with the influential American Legislative Exchange Council.

"U might think abt not drinking Coca Cola since company sucombed to pressure fr Leftist not to support ALEC [sic]," the conservative senator wrote on Twitter.

Coca-Cola in early April "elected to discontinue its membership" with ALEC following pressure from progressive and liberal groups.

ALEC creates “model” legislation for state lawmakers and describes itself as “policy making program that unites members of the public and private sectors in a dynamic partnership” based on “Jeffersonian principles.”

The little-known but influential organization has been a driving force behind voter ID laws, so-called “stand your ground” laws, business-friendly tort reforms, Arizona’s controversial immigration law, and efforts to privatize public education.

ALEC received little scrutiny until recently, when organizations like Color Of Change, Common Cause, People for the American Way, Progress Now, the Center for Media and Democracy, CREDO Action and the Progressive Change Campaign Committee began a campaign targeting the organizations’s corporate sponsors — who pay tens of thousands of dollars every year to be members.

Former ALEC members Mars Inc., the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Kraft Foods, Intuit, McDonald’s, Wendy’s, American Traffic Solutions, Reed Elsevier, Arizona Public Service and Blue Cross Blue Shield also publicly distanced themselves from the organization.

[Image via Gage Skidmore, Creative Commons licensed]