Koch brothers to pour $889 million into 2016 elections – ‘There is no network akin to this one in terms of its complexity, scope and resources’Posted by Jim at Tuesday, January 27, 2015
By Fredreka Schouten
27 January 2015
WASHINGTON (USA TODAY) – Top officials in the Koch brothers' political organization Monday released a staggering $889 million budget to fund the activities of the billionaires' sprawling network ahead of the 2016 presidential contest.
The budget, which pays for everything from advertising and data-gathering technology to grass-roots activism, was released to donors attending the annual winter meeting of Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce, according to an attendee.
Freedom Partners sits at the center of the vast operation, and in 2012 alone, spent nearly $240 million as it funded nearly three dozen organizations, ranging from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to smaller Tea Party groups.
The fundraising target is the latest indication that the industrialists at the center of the network, Charles and David Koch, intend to continue building an operation that could exceed the national political parties in size and scope to help advance their libertarian principles. The spending, unrivaled for an outside organization, represents more than double the nearly $400 million the Republican National Committee (RNC) raised and spent during the 2012 presidential election cycle. […]
During last year's midterm elections, Koch-affiliated groups spent millions in advertising to successfully toss out Democrats from the Senate and put the chamber in Republican control. In all, the Koch network is believed to have spent $290 million to help shape 2014 election results.
"We have never seen this before," Sheila Krumholz, who runs the non-partisan Center for Responsive Politics, said of the Kochs' planned spending, "There is no network akin to this one in terms of its complexity, scope and resources." [more]