Have nothing to do with the [evil] things that people do, things that belong to the darkness. Instead, bring them out to the light... [For] when all things are brought out into the light, then their true nature is clearly revealed...

-Ephesians 5:11-13

Tag Archives: Koch Brothers

The Donald Pouts, Doesn’t Need Koch Brothers’ Money

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Monday, August 1, 2016:  

Donald Trump in February 2009

On Saturday Donald Trump pouted on Twitter: “I turned down a meeting with Charles and David Koch. Much better for them to meet with the puppets of politics, they will do much better.”

It’s likely to turn out that The Donald will enjoy a coattail effect from Koch’s political advertising without appearing to be beholden to them.

The teapot tempest that the mainstream media tried to embellish (the Washington Post said that the Koch Brothers “refused to help Trump,” adding that Republican donors in the Koch Brothers’ Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce “are rebelling against” him) may actually turn to Trump’s advantage.

It all started when The Donald held a town hall meeting in Colorado Springs (where the Koch Brothers were holding their biannual meeting of well-to-do Republican donors at the Broadmoor Hotel) on Friday, with an evening presentation in Denver, but wasn’t invited to drop by the hotel in between for a quick chat. The Brothers Koch countered that Trump hadn’t even been invited so how could he turn down their invitation?

No matter. Charles Koch made clear that he and his brother David had other plans for the millions they hoped to raise anyway. Originally (that is to say, before Donald began getting traction during the Republican primaries) the network planned to raise nearly $900 million, with most of it to be directed at the presidential campaign. Now, however, that number has been cut back to $750 million, and only a third of it will be spent on political advertising. Charles made that clear Saturday night in his opening remarks to the 400 well-heeled who gathered at the Broadmoor. Koch said:

We have an uphill battle … the majority of Americans are focused on … an increasingly stagnant, two-tiered society, with the rich and politically-connected doing well and most everybody else stuck down below.

 

People have lost their optimism … they’re frustrated and disillusioned … they’re looking for answers.

Koch made it clear that neither Trump nor Clinton would be the ones to provide them:

Unfortunately [people are] looking in the wrong places. They’re looking to politicians. To me, the answers they’re getting are frightening because these answers will make matters worse … some of these solutions … would not just make them a little worse, but much worse….

 

The good news is that we have built this network for just such a condition. That puts us in a position to make progress in spite of the current political situation where, in some cases, we don’t really have good options.

Message: we’re going to spend your money on defending Republican Senate seats while hoping to extend the party’s present 54-46 advantage. Mark Holden, general counsel and senior vice president of Koch Industries, served as chair for the gala affair and told reporters that the network had “no intention to go after Donald Trump” and would only run ads critical of Clinton if they would help Republican senatorial candidates in critical states with close races.

RealClearPolitics shows Republicans ahead in most states, but, in many cases, by very narrow margins. In New Hampshire, incumbent Senator Ayotte holds just a 0.6 percent polling advantage over her rival, while Pennsylvania Republican Senator Pat Toomey holds just a 0.3 percent advantage over his Democrat opponent. Even in Florida Senator Marco Rubio is far from a shoo-in, leading his Democrat opponent by only 4.4 percentage points. At the moment RCP is calling the Democrats to gain at least one seat in November, dropping the Republican advantage to 53-47.

The Kochs have already contracted to spend $40 million of their donors’ money (each donor had to have the ability and make a promise to donate a minimum of $100,000 to the Koch’s network before being invited to the weekend fete at the Broadmoor) for political ads in five critical states: Nevada, Indiana, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Ohio and they’re considering helping Rubio in Florida if he needs it.

After pouting on Twitter that he doesn’t need the Koch’s money, Trump announced a dollar-for-dollar match campaign fund drive over the weekend. He emailed his list: “Our fundraising department can barely keep up. I am going to personally match your donation today, and every day you donate up to midnight [July 31], up to $2 million.”

As suggested, Trump may just be able to have his cake and eat it too: he can raise plenty of money on his own, thank you very much, and still take advantage of any anti-Clinton ads the Koch Brothers decide to run in close Senate races. In the meantime he maintains his image as the “independent” candidate.


Sources:

The Wall Street Journal: Koch Brothers’ Network of Donors Meets Without Donald Trump

CNBC.com: Donald Trump says fundraising ‘crushed’ goals, rejects money from Koch brothers

The Washington Post: Koch network refusing to help Trump

Charles Koch’s Vision for a Brighter Future – opening remarks Saturday night

RealClearPolitics: Dems to pick up one seat in Senate as of 7/31/2016

RealClearPolitics: Senate No Toss Ups 2016

Koch Brothers Not Funding Trump May Work to Trump’s Advantage

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, August 1, 2016:  

The Mediterranean Revival style Broadmoor Hote...

The Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs, site of the Koch’s shindig

Some 400 wealthy Republican donors, including 100 new ones, attended the Koch Brothers’ Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce biannual meeting at the Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs over the weekend. One of those who could have attended, but wasn’t invited, was Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump.

Trump was in Colorado Springs on Friday for a campaign stop in the afternoon and a presentation in Denver that night. He could have dropped in, but he wasn’t on the agenda. Instead the donors were treated to presentations and policy discussions from three Republican governors, four Republican senators, and four members of the House, including Speaker of the House Paul Ryan.

In Trump’s absence, Charles Koch made clear the network’s new direction: focusing on keeping and perhaps strengthening the present Republican Party’s slim advantage in the Senate. Koch stated, “We have an uphill battle … the majority of Americans are focused on … an increasingly stagnant, two-tiered society, with the rich and politically-connected doing well and most everybody else stuck down below. People have lost their optimism … they’re frustrated and disillusioned … they’re looking for answers.”

Koch made it clear that neither Trump nor Clinton would be ones to provide them:

Unfortunately [people are] looking in the wrong places. They’re looking to politicians. To me, the answers they’re getting are frightening because these answers will make matters worse … some of these solutions … would not just make them a little worse, but much worse…. The good news is that we have built this network for just such a condition. That puts us in a position to make progress in spite of the current political situation where, in some cases, we don’t really have good options.

He then clarified the purpose of the Freedom Network: Only about a third of the funds raised by the network would go to direct political action, with the balance put toward education on immigration policy and government regulation.

Each of the donors was invited based upon their ability, and their promise, to give at least $100,000 to the network. Last year it was estimated that the network would raise about $900 million, with most of it to be focused on the upcoming presidential election. However, that number has been reduced to $750 million, with only about $250 to $280 million of it going into political advertising. Network chairman Mark Holden, general counsel and senior vice president of Koch Industries, told reporters on Saturday that the network has “no intention to go after Donald Trump” and would run ads critical of Clinton only if strategists decided they would help Republican senatorial candidates in critical states with close races.

The network has already contracted to spend $40 million in five of those key states: Nevada, Indiana, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Ohio — and possibly Florida as well, where Senator Marco Rubio has just a four-point polling advantage over his Democrat rival. In Pennsylvania, Senator Pat Toomey holds a miniscule 0.3 percent polling advantage over his Democrat rival. In each of the other states Republicans hold slim polling advantages over their Democrat rivals.

At this writing, RealClearPolitics (RCP) shows the Democrats picking up two seats from the Republicans in November (Illinois and Wisconsin), while the Republicans would garner one seat now held by a Democrat in Nevada, for a net gain of one for the Democrats — narrowing the Republican advantage to 53-47 if RCP’s results hold through the election.

On Saturday Donald Trump tweeted: “I turned down a meeting with Charles and David Koch. Much better for them to meet with the puppets of politics, they will do much better.”

Trump polished his “puppet-free” political position over the weekend by announcing a campaign wherein he would match dollar-for-dollar every contribution made to his campaign: “Our fundraising department can barely keep up. I am going to personally match your donation today, and every day you donate up to midnight [July 31], up to $2 million.”

There could well be a “coattail” effect if the Kochs’ network is able to keep and even expand the Republican majority in the Senate. Ads tying Democrat senatorial candidates to Clinton could help Trump’s campaign whether intended to or not.

In addition, Trump’s independence from those “puppets of politics” keeps Clinton from claiming that The Donald is just a mouthpiece for the Koch Brothers.

Trump Lines up Financial Backers, Gains NRA’s Endorsement

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, May 23, 2016:  

In a brazen but brilliant marketing move, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump made public his list of potential Supreme Court nominees, which were analyzed and pronounced “acceptable” by many of those not yet in Trump’s corner. He managed to secure the blessings — including financial —of several wealthy supporters. He spent time calling on Republican Party insiders, including House Speaker Paul Ryan, in his attempts to enlist their support for his campaign. And then, to cap off the week, he secured the endorsement of the National Rifle Association (NRA) at its annual convention even before he had said a single word.

In preaching to the choir at the NRA’s convention Friday evening, he took the opportunity to make clear — if clarity was necessary for that partisan audience — how much of a threat he thinks Hillary Clinton would be to gun ownership and the Second Amendment:

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Endorsements of Trump by Billionaires May Open Other GOP Wallets

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, May 16, 2016:  

English: Photo of Sheldon Adelson, chairman of...

Sheldon Adelson, chairman of Las Vegas Sands and Hong Kong-listed subsidiary Sands China.

Last week T. Boone Pickens, chairman of hedge fund BP Capital Management and with a personal net worth estimated at about a billion dollars, endorsed Donald Trump and offered to host some fundraisers for him.

The big news came on Friday when Sheldon Adelson (shown), chairman and CEO of the Las Vegas Sands Corporation and with a personal net worth estimated at more than $25 billion, published his endorsement of Donald Trump in the Washington Post. That was followed up by revelations from insiders to the New York Times that he will put his money where his mouth is, to the tune of $100 million. That’s an amount equal to the total Adelson contributed to 34 Republican campaigns in 2012, only this year he will be focusing his largesse almost exclusively on getting Trump elected in November.

Adelson explained his reasoning and urged other Republicans to get on board as well:

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A Hundred Million Dollars Just Isn’t What It Used To Be

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Monday, May 16, 2016:  

Blame the Federal Reserve. Or better yet blame the political elections, which H.L. Mencken considered as “advance auctions of stolen goods.”

It now takes a billion dollars just to lose an election. That’s why Hillary Clinton has such an advantage, at least at the moment. A month ago the New York Times reported that, so far, Clinton has raised $262 million for her campaign compared to Trump’s $51 million. In 2012 the presidential campaign (not counting primaries) cost Obama’s and Romney’s campaigns $2.6 billion and, according to Investopedia, 2016 is likely to shatter that record, perhaps touching $3 billion, or even more.

So the announcement last week that T. Boone Pickens (a modest billionaire, if there is such an animal) endorsed Donald Trump for president and even offered to host some fund raisers for him, was Page Three news.

What hit the headlines on Friday, however, was

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Democrat Strategy to Take Back the Senate: Attack the Koch Brothers

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Friday, November 20, 2015:  

Upon learning that the Koch brothers, Charles (shown) and David, and their network of conservative donors, were planning on spending upwards of $750 million over the next two election cycles, Harry Reid, the Senate minority leader and harsh critic of the Kochs, enlisted the help of two hard-left political strategists to respond. David Brock, the founder of Media Matters in 2004 and the super-PAC American Bridge in 2010, joined with Geoff Garin, president of Hart Research Associates, to build a plan for Democrats to take back the Senate in 2016.

Brock investigates strategy via focus groups while Garin

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Latest Poll Rejects Republican Politicians, Favors Newcomers in Presidential Field

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Wednesday, September 23, 2015: 

One had to read well into CNN’s latest poll on the Republican contenders to discover a startling fact: Republicans, for the first time in memory, are rejecting Republican politicians en masse in favor of three who never have held political office. Here are the numbers from last week: Trump: 24 percent; Fiorina: 15 percent; Carson: 14 percent.

Much ado was made over Fiorina’s leapfrogging over Carson, and Trump’s fading by eight percentage points. But, deep into the report was this: “In a jam-packed GOP presidential field, the leading candidates are the only ones who have never held political office.” Here’s the math: those three are favored by 53 percent of Republican voters polled, leaving the remainder with the crumbs.

Gary North, an observer of the political scene ever since he worked as an assistant to Congressman Ron Paul in his Washington office in 1976, has never seen anything like it. In his members-only newsletter, North wrote:

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Who Is Bernie Sanders?

This article first appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Friday, May 1, 2015: 

In his remarks announcing his decision to campaign for the Democrat Party’s presidential nomination, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders (shown) fired a warning shot at those either disparaging or belittling his intentions:

People should not underestimate me. I’ve run outside of the two-party system, defeating Democrats and Republicans, taking on big-money candidates…. [My] message that has resonated in Vermont is a message that can resonate all over this country.

Polls show Sanders running more than 50 points behind Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton while journalists have emphasized his inability to raise large amounts of cash for his campaign. Others have said he has little name recognition outside of Vermont, and that his stage presence lacks Hillary’s practiced homilies and faux sincerity. Even the Wall Street Journal wrote, “Sanders isn’t going to be president,” claiming that he only wants to redirect the political conversation more to the left, forcing Clinton to clarify stands about which she has been both opaque and obtuse.

Observers should know that Sanders has been

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Rubio’s Candidacy Challenges Dynasties of Bushes, Clintons, Obama

This article first appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, April 13, 2015: 

English: Official portrait of US Senator Marco...

On Monday morning an advisor to Republican Florida Senator Marco Rubio told some of his donors to expect his announcement Monday night that he would formally declare his candidacy for the Republican Party’s nomination for president in 2016. He also told those donors that Rubio is “uniquely qualified” to lead the nation. 

The contrast between Rubio and Hillary Clinton, the presumptive Democrat nominee, couldn’t be greater. She’s 67; he’ll turn 44 next month. She’s a tired warhorse hauling enough political baggage to stuff a 14-foot U-Haul trailer. Rubio has stumbled on some issues, but has regained his balance. Hillary lost a heartbreaker in 2008 to an upstart, while Rubio came from 20 points behind a popular Florida governor in 2010 to take his current Senate seat.

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Sen. Harry Reid’s Legacy: Corrupting the World’s Greatest Deliberative Body

This article first appeared at The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Monday, March 30, 2015:

Libertarian economist and Cato scholar Donald Boudreaux has little favorable to say about politicians:

It is the rare politician, of whatever party, who reliably puts principle above personal interest. As a rule, politicians are untrustworthy, duplicitous, and cowardly; they are people who have the unusually powerful craving for power and fame; and the successful among them typically possess an unusual talent for camouflaging their craving for power and fame as a saintly calling to “serve the people.”

But what about the “successful among them,” like Nevada Democrat Senator Harry Reid who just announced last Friday that he would be retiring at the end of his present term?

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The Freedom Fight’s First Premise Proven in New Jersey

This article first appeared at The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Wednesday, March 25, 2015: 

Portrait of Thomas Jefferson by Rembrandt Peal...

For decades it’s been an article of faith among those involved in the freedom fight that Jefferson was right: “Educate and inform the whole mass of the people [for] they are the only sure reliance for the preservation of our liberty.”

The decision by New Jersey’s Governor Chris Christie to sign a bill into law that prohibits the continued militarization of local police departments through free gifts of unneeded hardware from Iraq and Afghanistan unless approved by local authorities is simply the end result of years – no, decades – of efforts by many to educate citizens about the dangers such militarization is to their freedom. The fact that the bill passed both houses unanimously just made it easier for Christie to do so.

New Jersey is only the first. Even stronger bills are pending in

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N.J. First State to Ban Police Militarization Without Local OK

This article first appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Tuesday, March 24, 2015:

Last week New Jersey Governor Chris Christie signed into a law a bill (passed unanimously by both houses) that made his state the first to require local approval before any local law-enforcement agency can accept military equipment from the U.S. government. It won’t be the last.

Even stronger bills banning the practice, under the so-called “1033 Program” of local law-enforcement agencies dealing directly with the Department of Defense for free military equipment, are pending in Montana, Massachusetts, and Minnesota.

It was touch and go in New Hampshire:

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A Billion Dollars to Elect Good Conservatives?

This article first appeared at The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Thursday, January 29, 2015:

The assumption behind raising and spending a billion dollars, as the Koch brothers Charles and David seem to support, is that with enough money, enough grassroots action, and sufficiently elegant voter software, election successes like that of last November can be repeated in 2016. This past weekend, Freedom Partners, the Koch’s equivalent to a chamber of commerce for wealthy conservatives (each of its 200 members pays a minimum of $100,000 in annual dues), announced at its Palm Springs winter meeting that it was going to raise $900 million to pour into the upcoming presidential election.

Part of the money would go into advertising,

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Koch Brothers’ Network to Spend $900 Million on 2016 Elections

This article first appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Tuesday, January 27, 2015: 

Spokesmen for Freedom Partners, the Koch Brothers-funded “chamber of commerce” and sponsor of their annual winter meeting in Palm Springs, announced last weekend that its network of over 200 wealthy conservatives is planning on raising nearly $900 million to invest in the 2016 elections. This is more than double what the network raised and spent during the 2012 presidential campaign, and exceeds what both political parties spent that year put together. 

Freedom Partners is building on the momentum from the November elections that gave Republicans control of the Senate and expanded their majority in the House of Representatives. As Freedom Partners President Marc Short remarked, “2014 was nice but there’s a long way to go.” He noted that his group’s ultimate goal is to make the ideals of a free market “central” in American society, adding, “Politics is a necessary means to that end.” Freedom Partners invested more than $400 million in those midterm elections. 

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Koch Brothers Learn from 2012, Restructure for 2014 and Beyond

Americans for Prosperity

This article first appeared at The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Wednesday, October 8, 2014:

Sensing an opportunity to turn the liberal tide in 2012, free-market advocates Charles and David Koch established the Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce. They successfully recruited about 200 members, each of whom paid a minimum annual membership fee of $100,000 and raised more than $250 million in the process. When added to other funds that the Koch Brothers were able to raise in their effort to influence the electorate in 2012, the total came to more than $400 million.

Despite that enormous sum,

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Koch Brothers and Friends Pouring Millions Into Midterms

This article first appeared at TheNewAmerican.com on Tuesday, October 7, 2014: 

Americans for Prosperity

Americans for Prosperity, one of the Koch Brothers’ key operating units, in its efforts to bring its conservative influence into national politics, is expected to spend more than $125 million in the 2014 elections.

After getting thrashed in the 2012 elections, when the brothers and their friends spent nearly $400 million with little to show for it, they have adopted much of the Left’s political organizing strategy and database management strategies. They’re determined not to make the same mistake twice.

In January, the Koch Brothers were able to raise nearly

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IRS Investigations Used in the Past to Intimidate and Punish White House Enemies

The recent admissions of guilt by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) that it deliberately targeted conservative non-profits for intimidation have forced to the surface a long list of other IRS abuses that have faded from public memory with the passage of time.

The IRS has been a tool of intimidation and neutralization for decades under administrations as far back as

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Koch Brothers Revamp Strategies for 2014

At the Koch Brothers’ donors’ strategy meeting at the Renaissance Esmeralda golf resort in Palm Springs, California, last week, the atmosphere was a blend of reality and optimism. The reality was stated in an email from Charles Koch that was sent to potential participants back in January explaining why the meeting was being postponed to April:

Despite November’s disappointing election results, I am convinced that

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Overlooked Conservative Victories

English: Tim Phillips speaks at an AFP healthc...

Tim Phillips speaks at an AFP healthcare rally next to the United States Capitol in October 2009. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Tim Phillips, a columnist at Townhall, reminded his readers that “out in the states we saw a year of broad-based victories for economic freedom that demonstrate anew that all is not lost. In fact, we are winning with the American people in many respects.”

Who, exactly, is the “we” that he is talking about? Phillips is the head of Americans for Prosperity, which was founded in 2004 and funded initially by the Koch brothers. It’s mission is to  promote conservative principles such as “limited government and free markets on the local, state, and federal levels.” It has

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Charles Koch: Covert Libertarian No Longer

A statement for the Koch Brothers at the Occup...

A statement for the Koch Brothers at the Occupy Wall Street protests. (Photo credit: Caroline Schiff Photography)

In Jane Mayer’s expose of Charles Koch, the billionaire conservative running Koch Industries in Wichita, Kansas, she made it sound as if she were shedding the light on Koch’s political activities for the very first time. Titled “Covert Operations,” Mayer noted that the growth of Koch Industries since Charles and his brother David took over its operations after the death of their father, Fred Koch, in 1967, has made each of them multi-billionaires—somewhere in the neighborhood of $25 billion each. Koch Industries operates oil refineries in Alaska, Texas, and Minnesota, 4,000 miles of pipeline, along with Brawny paper towels, Dixie cups, Georgia-Pacific lumber, Stainmaster carpets, the spandex product Lycra and generates an estimated $100 billion a year in revenues.

But the real lowdown, according to Mayer, is how they are investing their wealth:

The Kochs are longtime libertarians who believe in drastically lower personal and corporate taxes, minimal social services for the needy, and much less oversight of industry—especially environmental regulation.

And they are doing it with a flourish. Mayer quotes Charles Lewis, the founder of the Center for Public Integrity—calling it a “non-partisan watchdog group” which in fact is funded by internationalist socialist George Soros’ Open Society Foundation and the Ford Foundation, among others, to “reveal abuses of power, corruption and dereliction of duty by powerful public and private institutions…”—as saying:

The Kochs are on a whole different level. There’s no one else who has spent this much money. The sheer dimension of it is what sets them apart…

Charles Koch’s efforts are based on both the short-run—determined to keep President Obama a one-term president and turn control of the Senate back to the Republicans, as well as the long-run—by

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Many of the articles on Light from the Right first appeared on either The New American or the McAlvany Intelligence Advisor.
Copyright © 2020 Bob Adelmann