The AEI is one of the oldest and most influential Think Tanks in America. It is a pro-business, right-wing, conservative organization in spite of their claim to be absolutely non-partisan. One of the most troublesome aspects of this group, among man, is their ability to place their people in influential governmental positions.
Located on Seventeenth Street NW in Washington, D.C., the American Enterprise Institute’s Board of Directors is comprised of CEO’s of major companies, including ExxonMobile, Motorola, American Express, State Farm Insurance, and Dow Chemicals.
The top donors to this organization have been the Smith-Richardson Foundation, the Olin Foundation, the Scaife Foundation, and the Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation. On top of that, they receive millions of dollars from their corporate supporters – General Electric, Amoco, Kraft, Ford Motors, General Motors, Kodak, Metropolitan Life, Proctor and Gamble, Alcoa, General Mills, et. al.
Their areas of focus are varied, but generally include America’s culture war, domestic policy and federal spending, education reform, and welfare reform. During the Bush administration, he appointed more than twenty people from this group to senior positions in his administration. Of course, Vice President Dick Cheney is one of the former Trustees of AEI.
AEI scholars have given testimony before Congress on numerous issues, including the argument that prayer belongs in public schools and doesn’t violate the Establishment Clause. Additionally, they have come out in favor of censorship of the arts, and have advocated heavily for federally funded school voucher programs.
Their list of Fellows and Scholars includes Lynne Cheney, wife of Vice President Dick Cheney, Newt Gingrich, Christina Hoff Summers, an anti-feminist crusader, and Charles Murray, author of The Bell Curve.
In 2007, a major climate change report was issued from the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). AEI then offered $10,000 to any scientist who could undermine this report and emphasize its shortcomings.
The American Enterprise Institute is a major policy-making organization in this country with close ties to the Heritage Foundation, the Council for National Policy, ALEC, and the Center for Security Policy. The organization and those affiliated with it, are some of the biggest movers and shakers in shaping policy and legislation in America. They foster extreme right-wing ideological views and help to shape and promote the individuals who will run their extreme agenda in the halls of the United States Government.