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Saturday, 30 August 2014

The Meaning of the Koch Brothers Tapes: "I Don't Know Where We'd Be Without You" | Mike Lux

The Meaning of the Koch Brothers Tapes: "I Don't Know Where We'd Be Without You" | Mike Lux

The Meaning of the Koch Brothers Tapes: "I Don't Know Where We'd Be Without You"

Article by MIKE LUX




One of the classic strategies for politicians caught saying
embarrassing things is to use the old "there's nothing to see here, keep
moving" ploy. Republicans tried that at first when Romney was caught on
the 47% tape, but it didn't work for them because it wasn't only what
Romney said that was so offensive, it was the context: speaking to a
bunch of wealthy donors about all those greedy seniors and poor people.

Sounds familiar.

The spectacle of Mitch McConnell, Joni Ernst, Cory Gardner, Tom Cotton,
the head of the Republican Governors Association (and other politicians
who were on the agenda or in attendance) kowtowing to Charles and David
Koch and other billionaires gathered at the luxury resort. All the
money spent on security ($870,000 to rent the hotel exclusively not to
mention their own private security detail) to keep the meeting as
secretive as possible. And Mitch McConnell, the most powerful man in the
Republican party as the Senate Minority Leader, giving a speech
outlining how his entire career, and the party's future policy strategy,
were all in service to the Koch agenda. The combination will be as
definitional to this campaign as the 47% video was to 2012.

And this won't just make an impact in the four Senate races which have
gotten all the publicity so far. This is going to help define the
national narrative for the 2014 campaign: these tapes make 100% clear
that the modern Republican party is controlled by the Kochs and their
billionaire friends. The Kochs invite the most powerful party leaders,
the most important candidates, to their "seminars," and they all come
running. These politicians thank the Kochs and their billionaire friends
profusely, talk about how they wouldn't be where they are today without
them, and then tell them how they will battle on their behalf if they


Mitch McConnell,
speaking of the Republican party, said, "I want to start by thanking
you, Charles and David, for the important work you're doing. I don't
know where we'd be without you." Joni Ernst made absolutely clear,
multiple times, that she would never had a chance to win her primary
without the donors in the room. Tom Cotton thanked the billionaire
financiers for reviving the Republican party in his state, and Cory
Gardner begged them to invest heavily not only in Colorado but in the
entire Rocky Mountain region, which was "ripe" for them to come in and

Notice that these candidates come from all over the country - the South,
the West, the Midwest. The Koch donor network has a broad and deep
reach. They control the Republican party from sea to shining sea.

The Koch brothers have made clear their agenda. They don't believe in
climate change, and want no regulations on their oil companies. They
want their taxes reduced to almost nothing since they, after all, are
the "job creators." They oppose reform and regulation of Wall Street.
They don't believe in a minimum wage, or unemployment compensation, or
student loans, or Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. They think
public education should be privatized and turned over to the corporate

And what the 47% recording, and the Koch conference recordings, confirm
with 100% certainty, is that this is the same agenda, with the same
values, shared by Republican politicians.

The Kochs and their millionaire/billionaire friends in that luxury hotel
in Orange County, California are now in control of the Republican
party- lock, stock, and barrel. And that is the narrative, confirmed on
tape, of the 2014 election. Mitch McConnell is right: the GOP would be
nowhere without the Koch brothers. The Republicans know where their
bread is buttered, and will dance with the ones who brung 'em.

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