What do the Koch brothers get for their campaign funding and lavish hospitality during their sponsored events? Anything they want. And now, GOP governors are up for sale.
We all know both Democrats and Republicans rely on large campaign contributions to get elected, and then have to at least give big donors a seat at the table. Even the most sincere politicians must struggle with this reality - especially since our Koch puppet Supreme Court upheld deep-pocketed corporations' right monetary "free speech" in Citizens' United.
Alas, the Republican Party has taken their Koch addition to a whole new level. Now, instead of simply working with the immensely wealthy David and Charles Koch towards promoting common interests, GOP individuals and political organizations pitch entire campaigns for funding like start-up companies bidding for rounds of venture capitalist funding.
Why bother voting your constituents' interests, when you can buy ads that convince voters to support the Koch brothers' interests instead?
Investigative journalist Laura Windsor reports for The Nation that back in June, the Koch Brothers hosted a heavily-guarded "American Courage: Our Commitment to a Free Society" summit for right-wingers at the posh St. Regis Monarch Bay Resort in Dana Point, CA.
What do the Koch brothers get for their lavish hospitality?Anything they want.
Not only did the Kochs rent the entire place with its lush grounds and spectacular ocean views for $870,000, they also covered the cost of the rooms at a hefty $495 per night and up.
And now, Windsor has released a video with Phil Cox, executive director of the Republican Governors Association, with hat in hand, asking Charles and David Koch to fund a few hotly-contested governor's seats in battleground states… and telling them what they'll get in return.
After a series of open remarks, Cox heaped lavish praise on his party's billionaire masters:
"We've been very blessed because of your support of this seminar, a great partner with i360, Concerned Vets, LIBRE. We've really had no stronger partner over the last four years than Americans for Prosperity [a koch-fueled PAC]. SO thank for for all that you do."
Cox then proceeds to pitch the Koch brothers to bankroll four crucial governor races: Florida, Wisconsin, Michigan, and Arkansas.
Cox identifies Florida as the most expensive battleground state and estimates that they'll need $100-$150 million to bolster Governor Voldemort Rick Scott in his campaign against Charlie Crist - a disgusted former Republican now running as a Democrat.
Last Spring, Scott's ratings were deservedly in the sh*tter, but who needs viable policies when you can boost even the most unappealing candidate's poll numbers for just $1 million per point?
"Three months ago, Gov. Scott trailed by 12 points. It was looking pretty dire. Over the last eight weeks, the RGA and the Scott campaign have put 12 million into this race just over the last two months. Today, for the first time, Gov. Scott's job approval is over 50 percent."
Oh, and it turns out Koch cash has a lot to do with poor Wisconsin's inability to get rid of Scott Walker, possibly the WORST governor EVER.
"In Wisconsin, because of your support, the 2012 recall, uh, the, the story is very clear. Hefty donations from the Koch brothers Gov. Walker's reforms are working."
Never mind that Walker's accused of criminal misconduct, Wisconsin's in shambles, and the state's economy hasn't kept up. Koch Kash can magically make voters blame Walker's venal incompetence and malfeasance on President Barack Obama!
Cox lavishes praise on the Koch-funded Americans for Prosperity PAC for being a "tremendous partner" in crushing Wisconsin's teachers unions and thwarting the recall efforts.
And Cox wants the Koch brothers to double down on throwing dark money after bad:
"The RGA has already put $18 million into Walker over the last four years. We're not going to let up now."
Oh, and since Michigan's usually a blue state, Cox is especially keen for the Koch brothers to help him foist GOP Gov. Rick Snyder upon the increasingly unfortunate people of Michigan. Whatever have Michiganders done to deserve such a vile fate?
Despite privatizing Detroit and depriving its residents of water and other basic services and turning the once proud and prosperous home of the United Auto Workers union into a "right-to-work-for-less" state, Snyder has a good chance of retaining his seat.
Thanks to $3 million spent by the RGA (courtesy of the Koch brothers, Michigan is:
"a blue state, where Gov. Snyder currently leads by eight points."
In Arkansas, the governor's seat is open, as term limits prevent Democratic Gov. Mike Beebe from running again. The RGA wants more Koch Kash to promote GOP candidate Asa Hutchinson - a former governor and congressman - and derail the popular Democratic candidate and former congressman Mike Ross' campaign. Cox already takes great pride in the $2 million spent tying Ross to much-loathed figures like Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama. Alas, Asa Hutchinson still lags slightly behind despite the RGA investing "literally millions of dollars in get-out-the-vote activities." This is not surprising, considering that Hutchinson's only claim to fame is voting to impeach President Bill Clinton while in Congress.
Watch Cox's obsequious, Koch-sucking speech.