The Kochs Plan to Buy the 2016 Election for $889 Million

Charles Koch
The New York Times calls it $900 million. The Washington Post “nearly $1 billion.” CNN simply calls it “staggering.” Ben Ray, spokesperson for Democratic-aligned American Bridge put it best, telling USAToday: “What an obscene amount of money.”

The actual amount announced Monday at the Rancho Mirage Ritz Carlton is $889 million, and that is what the Koch brothers’ political network (17 Koch-funded organizations) plans to spend buying the 2016 elections for corporate America and the 1 percent.

It is, as CNN informs us, “[M]ore money than any private network has ever spent on an election cycle.” It is also as much as either the Republicans or Democrats spend: Compare this to the $675 million spent by the Republican Party in 2012. And the Kochs can spend the money however they want, unlike the RNC.

How much money is that? With a budget of $20 per person you could feed nearly 50 million people better meals than most of them have ever had for one day.

If you go by the approximately $3 the USDA reimburses schools for free student lunches, that $889 million would feed 296 million children. The USDA Food and Nutrition Service said 21 million kids received free or reduced-price lunches in 2013. You do the math.

Oxfam has already announced to the world that the “Richest 1 percent will own more than the rest by 2016.” Apparently, that isn’t enough for the Kochs. They’ve got to have their own country, too.

As The Washington Post reported,

The massive financial goal was revealed to donors during an annual winter meeting here hosted by Freedom Partners, the tax-exempt business lobby that serves as the hub of the Koch-backed political operation, according to an attendee. The amount is more than double the $407 million that 17 allied groups in the network raised during the 2012 campaign.

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), Rand Paul (R-KY) and Ted Cruz (R-TX) were all on hand at the Koch’s retreat for seminars and strategy sessions, greedily rubbing their fingers in anticipation. Not coincidentally, Newsmax tells us that,

Most of the 450 who attended the weekend event weren’t interested in another Mitt Romney run. They leaned more toward Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, and Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul.

What we can take from Charles Koch’s welcome speech Saturday, is that the Big Lie is alive and well in the Koch family: “Americans have taken an important step in slowing down the march toward collectivism,” he said. Of course, collectivism is not a threat and the Kochs are huge corporate welfare queens, more than happy to take our tax dollars from the federal government they excoriate.

Like his bought men, Walker, Rubio, Paul, and Cruz, Charles Koch is simply inventing threats out of whole cloth, and reassured guests and employees both,

But as many of you know, we don’t rest on our laurels. We are already back at work and hard at it! In fact, the work never really ends. Because the struggle for freedom never ends.

He claimed that,

Much of our efforts to date have been largely defensive to slow down a government that continues to swell and become more intrusive – causing our culture to deteriorate. Making this vision a reality will require more than a financial commitment. It requires making it a central part of their lives.

So the Kochs are presenting themselves as defenders of American culture now. This, from a man so far removed from American culture he cannot begin to imagine an average American’s life. Yet he claims to be defending our culture. This is the point of Koch’s speech at which the Greek gods would begin casting lightning bolts, for hubris was always mankind’s greatest sin.

Just keep in mind, that freedom he is talking about is serfdom for you and me.

The impact of this amount of money cannot be ignored. As Ben Ray of American Bridge put it, “If they are spending more than the RNC, I know exactly who the (Republican) presidential candidates will listen to.”

And even Grover Norquist told The Washington Post that, “It’s not like a Chicago political boss where Charles would say, ‘We’re all for this guy.’ But if he said, ‘I really like this guy’ and did an op-ed, it would matter.”

Which means Mother Jones is not engaging in mere hyperbole when they say, “It’s official: The Kochs and their rich friends are the new third party.”

Democrats, who have neither a plethora of corporations nor a bevy of 1 percenters to fund their campaigns, will have to work a lot harder to find that kind of cash. Of course, Democrat money will reflect the views of actual Americans rather than the insatiable appetites of the 1 percent.

According to the Post, “The $889 million goal reflects the budget goals of all the allied groups that the network funds. Those resources will go into field operations, new technology and policy work, among other projects.”

The one thing a billion dollars can’t buy are a viable platform or likeable candidates. It remains to be seen whether it is enough to convince blacks, Latinos, women and others that the Republican Party actually cares about them.

But make no mistake: this represents a full-scale assault on American democracy. Ted Cruz was quoted as saying Sunday night that, “There are a bunch of Democrats who have taken as their talking points that the Koch brothers are the nexus of all evil in the world.” He said that thinking is “grotesque and offensive.”

While you have to respect Cruz’s loyalty to his owners, he is wrong. What is grotesque and offensive is what he and his fellow employees of Koch Industries have been up to at the Rancho Mirage Ritz Carlton: plotting the murder of American democracy.

31 Replies to “The Kochs Plan to Buy the 2016 Election for $889 Million”

  1. Where are the people of the US? Are they OK with these two rich slimeballs buying the country?
    Wake up people we are no longer a democracy,
    I am just waiting for the rest of the republican run states to follow Indiana’s example and have a state run news service –
    you know, just like russia.

  2. Freedom? The Koch’s really believe money is freedom? well for the rich I guess it is but what about the rest of us. When are you Republican followers going to wake up and see reality?

  3. Yeah right and the left doesn’t have its cohorts in the game! Totally left agenda views here….wrong side

  4. The Koch brothers: an America in which a man is judged not by the color of his car, but by the content of his wallet.

  5. Lets see kochs 889 billion your favorite boogeyman Soros 3.5 million
    Yep according to bagger math both sides are equally at fault

  6. If they have lifted the veil of secrecy on their conclaves, it’s because they think the rest of us can no longer do anything about it.

  7. Just like how they bought their lord & master GWB the Whitehouse both times. Where was the government to prevent the acts of treason by the GOP & their fellow traitors? Oh right, they are just as guilty. GWB, and his fellow traitors should have been serving life for treason, crimes against humanity and illegal wars that killed thousands for their Reich-wing lies. America is doomed if all GOP loving morons are not removed from politics and power. Support/vote for them, you are as guilty of treason like GWB.

  8. Tony, the Left has never shut down a Senate debate to meet with Soros instead of doing the American people’s business.

  9. “It remains to be seen whether it is enough to convince blacks, Latinos, women and others that the Republican Party actually cares about them.”
    And THAT is exactly why these A**HOLES are trying so hard to relegate those groups to second-class (third class? steerage?) non-voting status.

  10. Yet, they will loose. The Democrats will still control the WH and at the rate the GOP are going, will continue to hold the WH for the next several elections. If everything works at, at some point, the Democrats will regain control of the other two Houses and undo the damage the GOP have wrought

  11. I hope Palm Springs in my state of BLUE California gouged the shit out of them at their conference of HATE.

    They probably paid homage to all the Eisenhower medical clinics on Gerald Ford drive on their way to the Betty Ford rehab center.

  12. I wonder if in reality the 2014 Mid Term election was won by the Republicans. The way I look at it, the conservatives look worse off than before the election, defeated, with nowhere to go or anything to lean on, they do not even trust in themselves. John Boehner and Mitch McConnell look more like the spokesmen of the lost tribe in a long treck to the unknown. At the end of their journey of tears and loved by no one, their reward is waiting for them; a bag of money that they never earned.

  13. Its like these kochsuckers are not even trying to hide their disdain for the country

    Indiana Gov. Mike Pence to launch ‘state-run news outlet’
    Gov. Mike Pence is starting a state-run taxpayer-funded news outlet that will make pre-written news stories available to Indiana media, as well as sometimes break news about his administration, according to documents obtained by The Indianapolis Star.

    Maybe they can name it truth which is Pravda in Russian.

  14. Just a thought. The Koch’s have pledged a staggering 889 mil, nearly a billion to win the 2016 election.
    Picking their candidate from among the tea bagger clowns.
    The teabaggers see a future of pure unadulterated pleasure of running this country as THEY see fit.
    What they do not see is, that the Koch’s will very quickly take over, with who ever is their hand picked lackey.
    This is the Koch’s only reason for the 889 mil. (Running this country, AS THEY SEE FIT.) Very quickly the Constitution will be eliminated,(Freedoms the Koch’s now talk about) will be eliminated. Serfdom,(as one comment mentioned) will be the order of the day. Way too much money seems to give some the idea THEY are GODS!
    Have news for you Koch brothers, (YOU ARE NOT GODS!)


    What the Frack? 41 House Dems Join GOP to Vote to Expedite Natural Gas Exports
    The House GOP decided to continue to show its love for the fossil fuel industry today by passing legislation to expedite the federal approval process for liquefied natural gas exports.

    The bill, named the “LNG Permitting Certainty and Transparency Act,” would set an arbitrary 30-day deadline on the Department of Energy for approving LNG export terminals.

  16. Here are those 41 Democrats organized by state:
    Ann Kirkpatrick (AZ-01)
    Kyrsten Sinema (AZ-09)

    Ami Bera (CA-07)
    Jim Costa (CA-16)
    Tony Cardenas (CA-29)
    Pete Aguilar (CA-31)
    Norma Torres (CA-35)
    Scott Peters (CA-52)

    Jim Himes (CT-04)

    Gwen Graham (FL-02)
    Patrick Murphy (FL-18)

    Dan Lipinski (IL-03)

    Pete Visclosky (IN-01)

    Cedric Richmond (LA-02)

    Dutch Ruppersberger (MD-02)
    Steny Hoyer (MD-05)
    John Delaney (MD-06)

    Colin Peterson (MN-07)

    Brad Ashford (NE-02)

    Donald Norcross (NJ-01)

    Michelle Lujan Grisham (NM-01)
    Ben Lujan (NM-02)

    Steve Israel (NY-03)
    Sean Maloney (NY-18)

    Tim Ryan (OH-13)

    Kurt Schrader (OR-05)

    Mike Doyle (PA-14)

    Jim Cooper (TN-05)

    Al Green (TX-09)
    Ruben Hinojosa (TX-15)
    Joaquin Castro (TX-20)
    Henry Cuellar (TX-28)
    Gene Green (TX-29)
    Marc Veasey (TX-33)
    Filemon Vela (TX-34)

    Gerry Connolly (VA-11)

    Suzan DelBene (WA-01)
    Rick Larsen (WA-02)
    Derek Kilmer (WA-06)
    Denny Heck (WA-10)

  17. In case you’re curious, here’s a list of the 80 people who own half the world:
    Thirty-five of the 80 richest people in the world are U.S. citizens, with combined wealth of $941 billion in 2014. Together in second place are Germany and Russia, with seven mega-rich individuals apiece. The entire list is dominated by one gender, though—70 of the 80 richest people are men. And 68 of the people on the list are 50 or older.

  18. What no one ever mentions is that the Koch brothers’ father, Fred Koch, was an early and important member of the John Birch Society and his sons espouse the agenda of that society to the letter. Instead of referring to them as “the Koch brothers”, they should be referred to for what they truly are, “John Birchers, David and Charles Koch …” If the media exposed them for who they really are and what they really stand for, maybe more people would stand up and say “enough!”

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