Koch Facts Home

Monday, June 1st, 2015

Koch Industries’ Statement on Clemency

Statement Regarding Clemency - KII

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Wednesday, May 13th, 2015
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Thursday, April 16th, 2015
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Wednesday, April 8th, 2015

Notable Links Digest – April 8, 2015

Another View — Mark Holden, Devon Chaffee, and Christine Leonard : We cannot ‘live free or die’ without meaningful criminal justice reform
New Hampshire Union Leader

For nonviolent offenders facing years, decades or even life in prison, “live free or die” takes on a whole different meaning.

New Hampshire has a low and stable crime rate, but its prison population is a different story. Between 1999 and 2009, the prison population increased 22 percent, and annual state spending on corrections doubled to more than $100 million. This reflects disturbing trends nationwide.

As home to the first-in-the-nation primary, New Hampshire will play a critical role in shaping the national debate over criminal justice reform. Pressing presidential candidates on the issues can help make the dream of a “second chance” a bipartisan reality.

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Friday, April 3rd, 2015

Notable Links Digest – April 3, 2015

Liberals Are the New McCarthyites—and They’re Proud of It
National Review

It was just over 60 years ago that the tactics of Senator Joseph McCarthy were repudiated when he was censured by the Senate in December 1954. Ever since then, McCarthyism — the reckless hurling of accusations at adversaries so as to destroy their reputations — has been considered one of the lowest forms of political behavior and one liberals love to crusade against.

But McCarthyism isn’t limited to one party or ideology. And if liberals have any sense of self-awareness they will recognize the tactic has returned and is growing in their back yard.

Harry Reid, the top Democrat in the Senate, was asked by CNN’s Dana Bash this week if he regretted his 2012 accusation on the Senate floor that GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney “hasn’t paid taxes for ten years.” Reid presented no evidence at the time and claimed he didn’t need any: “I don’t think the burden should be on me. The burden should be on him. He’s the one I’ve alleged has not paid any taxes.”

Reid’s response in the interview was fascinating. When asked by Bash if his tactic was McCarthyite he visibly shrugged on camera, smiled, and said “Well, they can call it whatever they want. Romney didn’t win, did he?” White House spokesman Josh Earnest refused to criticize Reid for his comment because it “was three years old,” when in reality Reid’s televised reveling in it was only three days old.

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Friday, March 27th, 2015

Notable Links Digest – March 27, 2015

The Campus Climate Crusade

Conservative thought on campus these days is rare, though for some it’s still not rare enough. Witness the growing campaign by politicians, unions and environmentalists to intimidate into silence any academic or program that might challenge liberal ideology.

Congressional Democrats have grabbed most of the attention here, with their recent attempt to cow climate skeptics. Richard Lindzen, an emeritus professor of meteorology at MIT and a Cato Institute scholar, earlier this month described in these pages how House Rep. Raul Grijalva was targeting seven academics skeptical of President Obama’s climate policies, demanding documents about their funding and connections. A trio of Senate Democrats is working to muzzle more than 100 nonprofits and companies that have questioned the climate agenda, with a fishing expedition into their correspondence.

Largely unnoticed is that the congressional climate crusaders didn’t come up with this idea on their own. For several years a coalition of liberal organizations have been using “disclosure” to sully the names of conservative professors and try to shut down their programs. Their particular targets are academics who benefit from funding from the Koch Foundation, which has for decades funded free-market professors and groups on U.S. campuses.

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Wednesday, March 25th, 2015

Notable Links Digest – March 25, 2015

Those evil Koch brothers 11

Nothing infuriates the left more than the generosity of David Koch, he of the notorious Koch Brothers, who keep on pursuing both activist conservative politics and pure philanthropy.

Three dozen scientists, joined by groups like the Sierra Club and Greenpeace, are demanding that all science museums cut ties with any people or firms that, like the Kochs, “profit from fossil fuels.”

More: They want David Koch kicked off the boards of the Museum of Natural History in New York and of the Smithsonian — to which he’s given $70-plus million.

Why? The Koch brothers also fund groups that question the political consensus on climate change — so their money is “tainted.”

Now, both museums say they have no intention of booting Koch or anyone else. They also note that permanent exhibits he’s endowed at the Smithsonian specifically address the impact of climate change.

Anderson Cooper 360
Koch Industries General Counsel Mark Holden and CNN Political Commentator Van Jones discuss the importance of criminal justice reform.

Mark Holden wants you to love the Koch brothers
Yahoo! Politics

Over lunch in the gleaming “Café Koch” cafeteria, Holden said he thinks Charles Koch’s distaste for the spotlight and for showboating of any kind prevents him from taking more credit for his considerable philanthropy and empire-building.

“He should be celebrated, in my opinion,” Holden said. “Like Ford, Rockefeller, Steven Jobs, Carnegie — you know what I’m saying?”

Cohlmia, the head of public relations, agreed. “He is an American hero and an icon, and we want people to know,” she added.

Holden and others who work with Charles Koch believe that his Midwestern distaste for claiming credit has fueled his vilification — and that if people understood his views and his accomplishments, the negative mythology would mostly disappear.

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Tuesday, March 10th, 2015
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Tuesday, March 3rd, 2015

Notable Links Digest – March 3, 2015

The Koch Brothers Just Launched a Lobbying Campaign to Eliminate an Obscure Government Agency. Here’s Why.
Mother Jones

On Tuesday, the industrial conglomerate run by billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch sent a letter to Congress urging lawmakers to oppose the reauthorization of this obscure, 80-year-old institution, which otherwise will expire at the end of June. Signed by Philip Ellender, the president of Koch’s government affairs arm, the letter signals the start of a Koch lobbying effort aimed at shuttering the New Deal-era agency. The Ex-Im Bank has been living on borrowed time since September, when Congress temporarily extended its charter. But now Koch Industries wants Congress to eradicate the agency for good.

“The Ex-Im Bank is yet another example of the government intervening in the market to pick winners and losers,” Ellender writes. “It confers benefits granted by the American people as a whole to a small number of well-connected corporations. It socializes the risk of economic activity while benefiting relatively few companies.”


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Friday, February 20th, 2015

Notable Links Digest – February 20, 2015

So that’s it! Attacks on Koch brothers led to Dems’ midterm disaster, officials say
Washington Times

Democratic officials are second-guessing the party’s obsession with attacking … Koch …, saying it bears some of the blame for last year’s devastating election losses as the focus on the conservative billionaires diluted a party message already struggling for clarity.

Doubts about the relentless attacks on … Koch … surfaced as the Democratic National Committee held its annual meeting Thursday in Washington, where state party officials from across the country mulled what went wrong in 2014.

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Wednesday, February 18th, 2015

Notable Links Digest – February 18, 2015

Unlikely Cause Unites the Left and the Right: Justice Reform
New York Times

Koch Industries . . . and the center, a Washington-based liberal issues group, are coming together to back a new organization called the Coalition for Public Safety. The coalition plans a multimillion-dollar campaign on behalf of emerging proposals to reduce prison populations, overhaul sentencing, reduce recidivism and take on similar initiatives. Other groups from both the left and right — the American Civil Liberties Union, Americans for Tax Reform, the Tea Party-oriented FreedomWorks — are also part of the coalition, reflecting its unusually bipartisan approach.

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Wednesday, January 28th, 2015

Notable Links Digest – January 30, 2015

The Kochs Ride Again

One sign [America] is still a free country is that a band of like-minded people, devoted to principles they consider essential to the country’s thriving, can get together and try to effect them in public policy.

Unlikely bedfellows unite on criminal justice reform
Yahoo! News

Only one issue in Washington right now could bring together the Koch brothers’ top lawyer, an environmental activist, the former head of the NRA and Sen. Al Franken.

Criminal justice reform.

In a city best known for dysfunction and discord, the issue has stood out as a rare area of common ground between Democrats and Republicans.

Behind the Koch Caricature
National Review Online

In fact, the Kochs are hardly the biggest spenders. In 2012, reports the Center for Responsive Politics (a nonpartisan outlet that tracks political spending), 13 of the 20 most generous organizations making donations to outside spending groups (i.e., those not affiliated with candidates’ official campaigns) leaned Democratic. Koch Industries was No. 136 on that list. The Kochs did not even appear on the list of the top 100 individual donors (to outside spending groups that required the disclosure of donor names — some, such as 501(c)(4)s, do not).

Charles Koch: ‘We don’t rest on our laurels’
Wichita Business Journal

In his speech, Koch said, “Americans have taken an important step in slowing down the march toward collectivism,” but that “we don’t rest on our laurels.” He urged work toward freedom and a “society that maximizes peace, civility and well-being.”

Koch Brother Teams Up With Liberals on Criminal Justice Reform

The Kochs’ commitment in criminal-justice reform dates to the mid-1990s…

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Sunday, January 11th, 2015

Notable Links Digest – January 11, 2015

Congress doesn’t have to be a joke
Detroit Free Press

The federal criminal justice system’s onerous mandatory minimums and the culturally retrograde stripping of felons’ voting rights have long been an issue for the nation’s liberal constituencies. But they are also an affront to libertarian interests that generally find their home on the political right.

Last week, billionaire Charles Koch, a mega-funder for the GOP’s most conservative causes and candidates, penned a moving and articulate opinion piece pledging that he would focus on criminal-justice reform issues in 20

Charles Koch’s views on criminal justice system just may surprise you
The Wichita Eagle

Ten years ago, [Charles Koch] began giving money to support efforts by the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers to help train defense lawyers and reverse what some see as a national trend to get tough on crime, which has resulted in the tripling of the incarceration rate since the 1980s and has stripped the poor of their rights to a legal defense.

He’s going to give more to that effort, he said.

“Over the next year, we are going to be pushing the issues key to this, which need a lot of work in this country,” Koch said. “And that would be freedom of speech, cronyism and how that relates to opportunities for the disadvantaged.”

The nation’s criminal justice system needs reform, “especially for the disadvantaged,” Koch said, “making it fair and making (criminal) sentences more appropriate to the crime that has been committed.”

Truth is, there’s no one behind the wheel
Chicago Tribune

Meanwhile, for every rich conservative out there, there’s a rich liberal cutting checks, too. In other words, the one-percenters who supposedly run everything aren’t some homogenized class of economic overlords; they are, in fact, at war with each other. And, trust me, Charles and David Koch, Sheldon Adelson and Foster Friess no more think they are running the country than liberal super-donors Michael Bloomberg, George Soros and Tom Steyer do.

Corporate Good Guy of the Week: Koch Industries

Most big businesses that decry “big government” and “Washington interference” also lobby heavily for favorable tax treatment and anti-competitive regulations.  So it is worth noting that Koch Industries (cue evil mustache-twirl music now if you are a mindless liberal) is publicly arguing right now to let expire all of the “temporary” tax “extender” measures that Congress likes to roll over every year and that benefit a number of Koch’s own business ventures.  In other words, Koch is advocating policies that will raise its own tax bill.  But they are doing this consistent with their free market principles.

Principle centered leadership: The Koch brothers story
Midland Daily News

Every now and then, you come across exceptional people who by their leadership, courage, vision, principles, and imagination have literally changed the world. Charles G. and David H. Koch are two such people.

The Kochs have been criticized in many circles for their belief in, passion for, and support of the traditional values that have made America great. Charles and David are unequivocal believers in and advocates for free enterprise, private property rights, limited government, the rule of law, and individual responsibility. Simply put, the Koch brothers are concerned that government consumption of GDP in the U.S. is too high, taxes on U.S. businesses are too high, the U.S. national debt is too high, and the U.S. regulatory structure is handcuffing America’s ability to compete and create jobs in today’s complex global economy.

Perhaps all of us should be more concerned with the same issues the Koch brothers are.

Chris Rodel: Kochs give plenty to nonpolitical causes
Cap Times

Dear Editor: It still amazes me how people around here want to use the Koch brothers as the standard of all that is evil in society today. The letter that appeared recently, calling out the spending habits of the Kochs as opposed to the Frautschi/Rowlands or Morgridges (those folks have done admirable things for our community — thank you!) missed out on an opportunity to show how wealthy people across the entire nation support great nonpolitical causes.

The Koch brothers have spent hundreds of millions supporting medical research (David Koch is a prostate cancer survivor), higher education and science (being major donors to the Smithsonian and American Museum of Natural History), the fine arts (over $150 million to the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Lincoln Center).

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Wednesday, January 7th, 2015

The Overcriminalization of America

How to reduce poverty and improve race relations by rethinking our justice system.

[Originally Published on January 7, 2015 in POLITICO]

By Charles G. Koch and Mark V. Holden

As Americans, we like to believe the rule of law in our country is respected and fairly applied, and that only those who commit crimes of fraud or violence are punished and imprisoned.  But the reality is often different. It is surprisingly easy for otherwise law-abiding citizens to run afoul of the overwhelming number of federal and state criminal laws. This proliferation is sometimes referred to as “overcriminalization,”which affects us all, but most profoundly harms our disadvantaged citizens.

Overcriminalization has led to the mass incarceration of those ensnared by our criminal justice system, even though such imprisonment does not always enhance public safety.  Indeed, more than half of federal inmates are nonviolent drug offenders.  Enforcing so many victimless crimes inevitably leads to conflict between our citizens and law enforcement.  As we have seen all too often, it can place our police officers in harm’s way, leading to tragic consequences for all involved.

How did we get in this situation?  It began with well-intentioned lawmakers who went overboard trying to solve perceived or actual problems.  Congress creates, on average, more than 50 new criminal laws each year.  Over time, this has translated into more than 4,500 federal criminal laws spread across 27,000 pages of the United States federal code.  (This number does not include the thousands of criminal penalties in federal regulations.)  As a result, the United States is the world’s largest jailer — first in the world for total number imprisoned and first among industrialized nations in the rate of incarceration.  The United States represents about 5 percent of the world’s population, but houses around 25 percent of the world’s prisoners.

We have paid a heavy price for mass incarceration and could benefit by reversing this trend.  It has been estimated that at least 53 percent of those entering prison were living at or below the U.S. poverty line when their sentence began. Incarceration leads to a 40 percent decrease in annual earnings, reduced job tenure and higher unemployment.  A Pew Charitable Trust study revealed that two-thirds of former inmates with earnings in the bottom fifth upon release in 1986, remained at or below that level 20 years later. A Villanova University study concluded that “had mass incarceration not occurred, poverty would have decreased by more than 20 percent, or about 2.8 percentage points” and “several million fewer people would have been in poverty in recent years.”

African-Americans, who make up around 13 percent of the U.S. population but account for almost 40 percent of the inmates, are significantly affected by these issues.  According to Harvard sociologist Bruce Western: “Prison has become the new poverty trap.  It has become a routine event for poor African-American men and their families, creating an enduring disadvantage at the very bottom of American society.”

Reversing overcriminalization and mass incarceration will improve societal well-being in many respects, most notably by decreasing poverty.  Today, approximately 50 million people (about 14 percent of the population) are at or below the U.S. poverty rate.  Fixing our criminal system could reduce the overall poverty rate as much as 30 percent, dramatically improving the quality of life throughout society — especially for the disadvantaged.

To bring about such a transformation we must all set aside partisan politics and collaborate on solutions.  That is why we have partnered with the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers for more than 10 years to bring about positive changes in our justice system.

We support a five-step approach to criminal justice reform:

First, “do no more harm.” Legislators must resist the temptation to criminalize activities that do not fit a common-sense understanding of what is a “crime.” Criminal laws should not impose liability if the accused did not knowingly and willfully intend to commit the bad act. This explosion of criminal laws has led to imposing liability on activities that ordinary citizens would have no reason to believe would be criminal such as converting a wild donkey into a private donkey, bathing in the Arkansas Hot Springs National Park without a doctor’s note, and agreeing to take mail to the post office but not dropping it off.  It has led to criminal liability for amateur arrowhead collectors who had no idea their hobby could be a federal crime, as well as criminal charges and a conviction for a former Indianapolis 500 champion who got lost while snowmobiling during a blizzard and unwittingly ended up on federal land.

Second, we must address prosecutorial abuses – especially in the discovery and grand jury processes.  Even the late Senator Ted Stevens fell victim to prosecutorial abuse in his trial when during the discovery process, federal prosecutors systematically concealed evidence that supported the senator’s defense and testimony. Prosecutors must disclose all evidence favorable to the accused to ensure that every American should be treated equally and fairly under the law, whether the accused is a disadvantaged urban teenager or a wealthy corporate executive.

Third, we must ensure that all those charged with a crime receive their Sixth Amendment right to representation by a lawyer. Inadequate or no legal representation results in devastating consequences for criminal defendants and their families.

Fourth, end unduly harsh sentences and resulting disparities by eliminating mandatory minimum sentences that dictate punishment unrelated to the nature or harm of the underlying crime and facts.  We must honor the ideal of the punishment fitting the crime by allowing judges to exercise discretion.

Finally, after a sentence is served, we should restore all rights to youthful and non-violent offenders, such as those involved in personal drug use violations.  If ex-offenders can’t get a job, education or housing, how can we possibly expect them to have a productive life?  And why should we be surprised when more than half of the people released from prison are again incarcerated within three years of their release?

Hopefully, every lawmaker and committed citizen will support these proposed reforms.  Overcriminalization leads to mass incarceration, undermines race relations and ultimately keeps more people in poverty.  We believe the proposed reforms will improve well-being for all Americans, especially the most disadvantaged.

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Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014

Letter in opposition to H.R. 5771.

December 3, 2014

Dear Member of Congress:

On behalf of Koch Industries, I am writing to urge you to oppose the business tax extenders package, H.R. 5771, being considered in the House of Representatives. This package will reinstate corporate subsidies like the Wind Production Tax Credit, which expired on December 31, 2013. We believe this corporate credit, like many others in the current package, distorts the marketplace by allowing the federal government to pick winners and losers arbitrarily. We point to the Wind Production Tax Credit in particular, as it represents 20% of the entire business tax extenders package. That means more than $9.5 billion in taxpayer dollars being transferred to corporations.

First enacted in 1992, the PTC’s initial intent was for the federal government to foster and support a nascent wind energy industry. But over time, like all subsidies and mandates, good intentions have led to harmful unintended consequences, turning a hand-up to an industry in its infancy into a $23 dollar-per-megawatt-hour hand-out for big companies looking to pad their bottom-line. At a time when our nation is facing monumental economic challenges, this is the antithesis of the path we should be pursuing toward a simpler and less burdensome and wasteful tax code.

As such, we oppose ALL subsidies, whether existing or proposed, including programs that benefit us, which are principally those that are embedded in our economy, such as mandates. The Wind Production Tax Credit is a prime example of how government hides the cost of electricity mandates by rewarding investors while saddling taxpayers and ratepayers with higher electricity costs. The Wind Production Tax Credit artificially distorts the market to give an advantage to a politically-favored industry over other technologies by transferring the actual costs to taxpayers.

We do not believe government should be picking “winners and losers” by subsidizing or mandating certain industries or products. The record at doing so- both here and abroad- is abysmal, causing the loss of jobs and the waste of resources.

Koch’s government and public affairs activities are based on the principles that bring about the greatest well-being in society—freedom and property rights—core values that are recognized and valued by most Americans. Koch will continue to lobby for the repeal of subsidies and mandates, as we work to make people’s lives better. We believe history has proven that this is the best course to foster job creation, opportunity, and prosperity.

The Wind Production Tax Credit expired once for good reason. Let it expire for good. We urge you to oppose the business tax extenders package in its current form.


Phillip Ellender

President, Government & Public Affairs

Koch Companies Public Sector, LLC

600 14th Street, NW
Suite 800
Washington, DC 20005


Letter in opposition to H.R. 5771

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Monday, October 27th, 2014

Notable Links Digest – October 27, 2014

Did You Hear the Koch Brothers Just Gave a Million Bucks to NPR to Cover Healthcare?
Inside Philanthropy

Come to think of it, I didn’t recall any controversy when RWJF gave National Public Radio $5.6 million to report on healthcare between 2008 and 2011, during a period when this was among the most politicized of all topics.

You’d think that somebody would at least have raised an eyebrow, given that RWJF is a strong proponent of the Affordable Care Act, as well as other healthcare policy positions on the progressive side of the spectrum.

God bless that foundation, if you ask me. But as a thought experiment, imagine if the Koch brothers had given the same amount of money to NPR to cover healthcare.

People would have gone nuts.

A Rare Victory for Public Defense
New York Times

On the same day as the New York settlement, it was announced that the Koch brothers had made a six-figure grant to the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers to help train public defenders and fund research aimed at improving public defense.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo was right to stop fighting the lawsuit, which settled only on the eve of trial. New York had faced the embarrassment of being the first state to stand trial over its inability to provide public defense.

The Truly Daffy Demonization of the Brothers Koch

As Wichita’s Koch family has learned the hard way, the surest way to make mortal enemies in contemporary America is to build a hugely successful business, stick to your principles, and care about the future of your country.

A bantam-weight among those enemies is The Kansas City Star. Not above the occasional rabbit punch, Star editors jabbed away with a recent story headlined, “Conservative Koch group launches TV ad attacking Orman in Kansas Senate race.”

Never mind that the Kochs are libertarians, not conservatives. What intrigues about the story is that hundreds of groups run ads every campaign season. To single out just one sponsor by name when that sponsor is running perfectly legal ads in its own state suggests something deeper than a bias. It suggests a disease, specifically KDS—Koch Derangement Syndrome

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Tuesday, October 21st, 2014

Notable Links Digest – October 22, 2014

Koch Industries Funds Legal Defense For the Poor
Wall Street Journal

The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers announced this week that it’s getting a “major grant” from Koch Industries Inc. to support the group’s indigent defense training programs and to study how states can do a better job of delivering legal services to the poor.

“We are supportive of the NACDL’s efforts to make the Sixth Amendment’s guarantee of an individual’s right to counsel a reality for all Americans, especially those who are the most disadvantaged in our society,” Charles G. Koch, the chairman and CEO of Koch Industries, said in a statement about the grant, which is believed to be in the six figures.

Tom Steyer and the Right to Free Speech
Commentary Magazine

Democrats have spent much of the last year trying to fuel outrage about the efforts of what they claim is nothing less than a plot by rich conservatives to purchase American democracy. At the center of that campaign is an effort to demonize the Koch brothers with a secondary role being played by Sheldon Adelson. But, as the New York Times reports today, liberal environmentalist Tom Steyer has now exceeded Adelson as the country’s largest donor to Super PACs with at least $55 million dollars donated in the last year to help defeat Republicans in the 2014 midterms. While Steyer is within his rights to spend his money as he likes, his move into first place in the Super PAC rankings effectively demonstrates not only the hypocrisy of attacks on the Kochs but the disingenuous nature of the Democrats’ claim that the GOP is buying the election.

Exclusive: Right to Counsel Is the Kochs’ New Cause
New York Times

Koch Industries, in partnership with the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, is financing a program to provide scholarships and training for public defenders. The grant will also pay for a review of indigent defense programs to see what works in providing legal representation to those who can’t afford it.

Charles G. Koch, the chairman of Koch Industries, said in a statement that the grant was a way “to make the Sixth Amendment’s guarantee of an individual’s right to counsel a reality for all Americans, especially those who are the most disadvantaged in our society.”

Koch Industries gives grant to NACDL “to address the nation’s profound indigent defense crisis”
Washington Post

You hear a lot about the Koch brothers these days, but this press release from the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers cuts against the usual narrative:

Washington, DC (Oct. 21, 2014) – The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL), the nation’s preeminent organization advancing the mission of the criminal defense bar to ensure justice and due process for persons accused of crime or wrongdoing, has been selected by Koch Industries, Inc. to receive a major grant in support of NACDL’s efforts to address the nation’s profound indigent defense crisis.

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Thursday, October 16th, 2014

Notable Links Digest – October 16, 2014

Hey, Big Spender
National Review Online

Then, of course, there is the experience of the Koch brothers, Charles and David, who have been featured in dozens of television ads, verbally flayed by Senate Democrats throughout the election cycle, and lambasted by Reid for everything from “actually trying to buy the country” to being flat-out “un-American.”

The Kochs, who in 1986 sat for a lengthy New York Times profile chronicling the family’s disputes and dramas, are today in virtual hibernation. Many Republican donors have followed suit.

“All the attacks on us definitely sent a message to people that if you support what we’re for and what we’re doing, you’re going to pay a price,” says Mark Holden, who serves as general counsel for Koch Industries. “And while some people are still willing to go forward, other people, understandably, aren’t willing to pay that price.”

RFK JR.’S Unhinged Attack On The Kochs Besmirches The Kennedy Name

Koch has contributed roughly $1.3 billion to charity for medical research, education, culture, the arts, and policy studies.

It’s an incredible story. Besides the Met museum, he just announced a $100 million donation to New York Presbyterian Hospital. He’s given $185 million to MIT, and another $100 million to Lincoln Center. The list goes on and on.
At the end of that speech at the Met, David Koch said he hoped his legacy would be that he “did his very best to make the world a better place.” That legacy is firmly in place.

Robert Kennedy Jr. should be ashamed of himself. Blissfully unaware of the scientific facts and existing solely in his self-centered world, he insults one of America’s great benefactors and stains the greatness of his uncle, John F. Kennedy, and his father, Robert F. Kennedy.

Democrats outraising Republicans as election nears
Fox News

Despite outrage from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and other Democrats about billionaires like the Koch brothers donating to the GOP, statistics show Democrats are outraising Republicans this election season.

Sheila Krumholz of the Center for Responsive Politics estimated, “the Democratic senatorial campaign committee has raised $111 million compared to $82 million for their Republican counterpart.”

Even when you take all sources of money, from all donors for all races, the Democrats still lead. “It’s about $595 million for the Democrats, and about $450 million for the Republicans,” Krumholz said.

Begich, Reid lead the league in hypocrisy
Alaska Dispatch News

But Reid, Begich and Co. have an ugly secret. The campaign against the Kochs is a lie – a very big, very bold, very calculated lie. The Kochs, it turns out, are not the problem when it comes to big money in Alaska elections – not by a long stretch.

Federal Election Commission records analyzed by the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics show hypocritical Harry Reid is the problem when it comes to big outside money flooding into campaigns.

He is closely linked to an independent expenditure group, the Senate Majority PAC. It is the top outside spender when it comes to campaigns, the FEC says – and not just in Alaska but across the entire nation. At last report, it had spent $34.5 million. In Alaska, it almost single-handedly is paying for Begich’s independent re-election effort.

The Koch brothers? They are nowhere near the top of the list.

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Monday, October 6th, 2014

Notable Links Digest – October 6, 2014

Is Another Obama Administration Scandal About To Explode?

Austan Goolsbee directed Obama’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board and later chaired his Council of Economic Advisers. In August 2010, Goolsbee conducted a telephone press briefing in which, according to the Washington Post, he purported to reveal confidential taxpayer information

There are three possibilities here: either Goolsbee just made up the claim that Koch Industries doesn’t pay corporate income taxes; or he learned Koch’s tax status from some proper, legal source; or else he illegally accessed Koch’s tax returns and used the information he learned for political purposes in a call with reporters.

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Friday, October 3rd, 2014

Notable Links Digest – October 3, 2014

Reid calls out Kochs, but Dem pac spends more


Editorial: Leave Muppets out of it!
The Boston Herald

The presence of the billionaire philanthropist and promoter of libertarian and conservative causes on WGBH’s board is subverting its “mission,” according to Forecast the Facts, which has helped organize repeated protests at ’GBH aimed at Koch.

That’s a particularly hollow charge, given the millions Koch has donated to the network and specifically to the science program “Nova,” which has produced endless hours of coverage about climate change and its impact on the planet. Call that Exhibit A that Koch has little influence over the network’s editorial decision-making.

Are Liberals Fund-Raising Hypocrites?
By Thomas B. Edsall
The New York Times

Mark Holden, general counsel at Koch Industries, contends that the Democracy Alliance orchestrates the activities of a permanent “left infrastructure” with ties to 172 organizations, each determined to attack the Koch brothers’ agenda of free enterprise and democratic capitalism…

The Democracy Alliance is an organization of roughly 100 very rich men and women who agree to contribute at least $200,000 annually to a list of roughly 20 liberal think tanks and advocacy groups, according to documents obtained by Politico. The Alliance itself makes no contributions. Nor does it pay for television ads or engage in other direct campaign activity.

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