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Thursday, October 27, 2016

Koch BrothersThe Koch Company wants Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and the public to know that it played no role in the “legislative tactic of tying the continuing resolution to defunding Obamacare.”

A Koch Industries representative penned an open letter on Wednesday, aiming to “set the record straight” after Senator Reid said that the government shutdown was “satisfying the Koch brothers.”

The comments came during a Tuesday floor speech, in which Reid cited a New York Times article that shed light on a “well-financed, broad-based assault” on the Affordable Care Act that was months in planning and involved an alliance of powerful GOP groups.

Reid said that “according to the news article, a former Attorney General of the United States, Ed Meese, and the Koch Brothers” are behind “raising and spending hundred of millions of dollars to get us where we are right now.”

According to the New York Times, an organization called Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce — linked to the billionaire Koch brothers, Charles and David – contributed over $200 million last year to nonprofit organizations involved in the effort to defund Obamacare by tying it to the continuing resolution.

The Koch-financed Americans for Prosperity also spent $5.5 million on television ads targeting health care reform. Another $5 million was given to Generation Opportunity, the organization behind the now infamous Internet ad that showed a rather creepy, speculum-gripping Uncle Sam suddenly popping up between a woman’s legs during a gynecological exam.

The Senate Majority Leader added to his speech with a tweet saying that “by shutting down the government, Republicans are satisfying the Koch Brothers while millions of people are suffering.”

The Koch brothers are not ready to acknowledge their role in this latest governing crisis, however. The letter only admitted that “Koch believes that Obamacare will increase deficits, lead to an overall lowering of the standard of health care in America, and raise taxes.” But it maintained that Koch never took a “position” on tying the continuing resolution to defunding the health law, and they never “lobbied on legislative provisions defunding Obamacare.”

Koch may not have been behind the “legislative provisions,” but the Koch brothers certainly poured millions of dollars into the effort on which their company never took a “position.”

The letter did not stop short of advising Congress on what it “should” be doing.

“We believe that Congress should, at a minimum, keep to sequester-level spending guidelines, and develop a plan for more significant and widespread spending reductions in the future,” it read, adding, “Congress should focus on these efforts: balancing the budget, tightening and cutting government spending, curbing cronyism, and eliminating market-distorting subsidies and mandates.”

Koch Industries may claim that it had nothing to do with orchestrating the government shutdown — but if nothing else, its representative is happy to use all of the same talking points used by Republican lawmakers when trying to justify that very effort.

Photo: via Flickr

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  • Lynda Groom

    Of course not, it was just their money doing the talking.

  • sigrid28

    To the Koch brothers, hiding behind the Citizens United ruling, pulling the strings: Even your billions are not insulated from the effects of a lengthy government shutdown and a failure to raise the debt ceiling on time. The longer this uncertainly goes on, fueled by Tea Party candidates you paid to put in office, the more you risk the resounding defeat of future candidates you might support; the more voters will rise up to denounce and defeat your political agenda intent on destroying the middle class and increasing poverty in the U.S., while your inherited billions increase exponentially and you hide your fortune overseas. Being wealthy does not entitle you to play with the lives of fellow Americans, whose respect for you is declining day by day.

    • Independent1

      You definitely must be right about “you hide your fortune overseas.”. No wealthy person with any kind of stock market investment smarts would support the GOP. Even Fox News ran an article that showed that since 1900, the stock market return during Republican administrations had averaged around 5%; whereas under Democrat administrations the market had averaged around 12%. There’s a huge difference between a 5% and a 12% return. And my sense is that Fox even tempered this difference.

      Around 2006, the New York Times did a study which showed that since the crash of ’29, that the market’s return during the 40 years of Democrat administrations was just under 10%; whereas during the 35 years of GOP administrations it was actually less than .5%. The NY Times projected that $10,000 invested right after the ’29 crash would have grown to over $307,000 during the 40 years Dems were in office; whereas during the 35 yrs of GOP governance, the $10,000 would have only grown to $11,700.

      Given these FACTS – why would any truly wealthy person with any common sense bankroll the GOP if they were investing in American stock markets??

    • nirodha

      David Koch hasn’t changed a bit since he ran for vice-president on the Libertarian party ticket in 1980. At that time, he pushed a platform that featured abolishing Social Security, welfare and minimum wage laws. He and his brother Charlie are psychopaths (albeit very wealthy ones) whose goal is to enslave 98% of the American population, by thrusting all of us into abject poverty. Then, these latter-day Hitlers can invoke the ultimate fascist dream of the gotterdammerung.

  • JD Mulvey

    The Koch brothers? “Curbing cronyism”?? This has got to be a joke.

  • Becca Norwood

    The Koch brothers are corrupt, polluting, greedy fascists. Also pathological fucking liars. They financed this shutdown as blatantly as they buy Tea Party Governors. Why don’t they send message via stone tablets like the 10 commandments. These satanic cretins think when they speak we all should stop & quiver. Why don’t they speak for themselves? Just as chicken shit as Boehner for not owning their shutdown.

    • comish4lif

      I think in their minds, the Koch brothers aren’t lying. They didn’t pay to stop ACA. The paid a guy to stop ACA – and it was supposed to be a secret.

  • old_blu

    Here are some quotes on health care just something to think about, I know we have all heard them somewhere, even if we can’t name who said them, A little off topic but funny.
    Oct 2008: “You’ll never get elected and pass healthcare.”

    Nov 2008: “We’ll never let you pass healthcare.”

    Jan 2009: “We’re gonna shout you down every time you try to pass healthcare.”

    July 2009: “We’ll fight to death every attempt you make to pass healthcare.”

    Dec 2009: “We will destroy you if you even consider passing healthcare.”

    March 2010: “We can’t believe you just passed healthcare.”

    April 2010: “We are going to overturn healthcare.”

    Sept 2010: “We are going to repeal healthcare.”

    Jan 2011: “We are going to destroy healthcare.”

    Feb 2012: “We’re gonna elect a candidate who’ll revoke healthcare NOW.”

    June 2012: “We’ll go to the Supreme Court, and they will overturn healthcare.”

    Aug 2012: “American people’ll never re-elect you-they don’t want healthcare.”

    Oct 2012: “We can’t wait to win the election and explode healthcare.”

    Nov 2012: “We can’t believe you got re-elected & we can’t repeal healthcare.”

    Feb 2013: “We’re still going to vote to obliterate healthcare.”

    June 2013: “We can’t believe the Supreme Court just upheld healthcare.”

    July 2013: “We’re going to vote like 35 more times to erase healthcare.”

    Sept 2013: “We are going to leverage a government shutdown into defunding, destroying, obliterating, overturning, repealing, dismantling, erasing and ripping apart healthcare.”


    • neeceoooo

      So, Imagine that the company you work for held a poll, and asked everyone if they thought it would be a good idea to put a soda machine in the break room. The poll came back, and the majority of your colleagues said “Yes”, indicating that they would like a soda machine. Some said no, but the majority said yes. So, a week later, there’s a soda machine.
      Now imagine that Bill in accounting voted against the soda machine. He has a strong hatred for caffeinated soft drinks, thinks they are bad you you, whatever. He campaigns throughout the office to get the machine removed. Well, management decides “OK, we’ll ask again” and again, the majority of people say “Yes, lets keep the soda machine.”
      Bill continues to campaign, and management continues to ask the employees, and every time, the answer is in favor of the soda machine. This happens, lets say… 35 times. Eventually, Bill says “OK, I’M NOT PROCESSING PAYROLL ANYMORE UNTIL THE SODA MACHINE IS REMOVED”, so nobody will get paid unless management removes the machine.
      What should we do???
      Answer: Fire Bill and get someone who will do the f*cking job.
      Bonus: Bill tells everyone that he was willing to “Negotiate”, to come to a solution where everyone got their payroll checks, but only so long as that negotiation capitulated to his demand to remove the soda machine.
      Bill is a f*cking jackass.

      • old_blu

        That’s an awesome analogy. Well said neeceo and good to hear from you my friend.

        • neeceoooo

          Good to hear from you as well, I hope that things are good.

      • latebloomingrandma

        These were 2 great examples!! Why is it so easy for us to understand, yet the righties can’t get how insane they all sound? Brain damage from listening to too much Rush, Hannity, and Faux News?

      • idamag

        You, and Old Blu, have some very good examples.

  • docb

    They lie…we have a trail of their dark dirty money running through every ad and proposal and campaign including into the jomac cruz coffers and the walleyed walker campaigns.

    • Buford2k11

      We have one “Billy Bob Koch” living close by…he has tried to buy his way into the hearts and minds of my neighbors…He was successful in a small way…but when he insisted on his “military hardware” to lead the Fourth of July Parade, well there was a protest…The Maddow show had a small mention of this…This guy owns one of the local coal mines and is pushing the “war on coal” meme, as well as, trying to force a “land swap” deal that only benefits him, and screws the rest of us…oh yes, the Koch family has been well trained by their daddy in Fascist tactics, and how to take down a country…

      • idamag

        Our own version of the koch brothers buys the 4th of July Fireworks and has it billed as Malaleuca Freedom Fireworks. We had a ball field named after the man who gave the ground for it. A new ball field was desired. OUr version bought a new ball field and it is now named “Malaleuca Field. He flew all the state legislators, via his private jet, to Idaho Falls and dined them. They, later, passed a law that says if you leave a job, you cannot take a job in the same position in another company. BTW remember that when the Malaleuka salesman calls.

        • Buford2k11

          I really don’t need a “laxative”…the crap is thick enough…

  • 4sanity4all

    Oh, sure, now that it is probably adversely affecting their businesses, they probably want to act like they didn’t fund the political ads and the hate campaign they launched. Look at their words carefully, and you will notice that they are carefully parsing what they say; their corporation never funded…..but each brother personally? Yup, we know where the millions came from. Odd that they don’t want to be known as kingmakers. I guess because their efforts are starting to have FAIL written all over them, they want to be able to distance themselves. Too little, too late, everyone knows about the misery you union busting, hate mongering, selfish monsters have wrought upon this nation.