Daily Archives: Jan. 6, 2014

Koch-linked network raised $407 million last election

kochs“The political network spearheaded by conservative billionaires Charles and David Koch has expanded into a far-reaching operation of unrivaled complexity, built around a maze of groups that cloaks its donors,” the Washington Post reported. Tax filings show that the network backed by the Kochs and other donors raised at least $407 million during the 2012 campaign. “A labyrinth of tax-exempt groups and limited-liability companies helps mask the sources of the money,” the Post reported, but more than half of the money was funneled through the Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce, an organization whose board includes current and former Koch Industries officials.

Open thread (Jan. 6)

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Kansas not only state passing anti-abortion laws

abortionantiNationwide, state legislatures added more abortion restrictions the past three years than during the entire preceding decade, the Washington Post reported. More than 200 abortion restrictions were passed and signed into law from 2011 to 2013, according to the Guttmacher Institute. Last year 22 states enacted 70 anti-abortion measures. Kansas passed restrictions last year that banned sex-selection abortions and blocked tax deductions for abortion providers.

Conservatives push back against libertarians

voterepublicanFormer Bush administration officials Mike Gerson and Pete Wehner are pushing back against the rising influence of libertarianism in the Republican Party. They wrote in the journal National Affairs that “responsible, self-governing citizens do not grow wild like blackberries, which is why a conservative political philosophy cannot be reduced to untrammeled libertarianism.” They argued that “conservatives should offer a menu of structural reforms that do not simply attack government but transform it on conservative terms.” But as Washington Post political blogger Chris Cillizza noted, a nuanced explanation of when and where government is necessary doesn’t fire up the GOP base the way savaging Obamacare does.