Billionaire Charles Koch told Axios that he “screwed up by being partisan,” rather than approaching his network’s big-spending political action in a more nonpartisan way.
The Wall Street Journal profiles Charles Koch: “Mr. Koch said he has since come to regret his partisanship, which he says badly deepened divisions.”
Writes Koch, in his new book: “Boy, did we screw up! What a mess!’”
“Still, his political spending remains almost entirely partisan. Koch Industries’ PAC and employees donated $2.8 million in the 2020 campaign cycle to Republican candidates and $221,000 to Democratic candidates.”
Former RNC Chairman Michael Steele is joining the Lincoln Project, a group of Republicans working to prevent President Trump’s re-election, CNN reports.
Said Steele: “I get my role as a former national chairman. I get it, but I’m an American. I get my role as a former party leader. I’m still an American. And these things matter to me more than aligning myself with a party that has clearly decided it would rather be sycophantic than principled.”
The Lincoln Project, a group of anti-Trump Republicans that has produced a number of the election cycle’s most effective political attack ads, tells the Washington Post that it has raised $16.8 million this quarter.
“The recent Black Lives Matter protests peaked on June 6, when half a million people turned out in nearly 550 places across the United States. That was a single day in more than a month of protests that still continue to today,” the New York Times reports.
“Four recent polls — including one released this week by Civis Analytics, a Democratic data firm — suggest that about 15 million to 26 million people in the United States have participated in demonstrations over the death of George Floyd and others in recent weeks.”
“These figures would make the recent protests the largest movement in the country’s history.”
Popular Mechanics: “Should you happen to find yourself near a statue that you decide you no longer like, we asked scientists for the best, safest ways to bring it to the ground without anyone getting hurt—except, of course, for the inanimate racist who’s been dead for a century anyway.”
“The killing of George Floyd and the ensuing nationwide wave of protests are generating a record-setting flood of donations to racial justice groups, bail funds and black-led advocacy organizations across America, remaking the financial landscape of black political activism in a matter of weeks,” the New York Times reports.
“Money has come in so fast and so unexpectedly that some groups even began to turn away and redirect donors elsewhere. Others said they still could not yet account for how much had arrived. A deluge of online donations has washed over organizations big and small — from legacy civil rights groups to self-declared abolitionists seeking to defund the police.”
A new Yahoo News/YouGov poll finds that 52% of Americans agree that it is fine for NFL players to kneel during the national anthem to protest police killings of African Americans. Just 36% of respondents say it’s inappropriate and 12% were not sure.
In 2018, only 35% agreed with players’ right to protest.
Washington Post: “Tens of thousands of protesters are expected in the nation’s capital Saturday in an all-out rebuke of aggressive police tactics, racism and the Trump administration’s militant approach to the days of unrest that have gripped cities from the District to Los Angeles and hundreds between.”
In a forthcoming documentary, Norma McCorvey — known as Jane Roe of Roe v. Wade — admits that she was paid to make anti-abortion comments “in the mid ’90s when the pro-choice advocate and activist appeared to become a born-again ex-gay Christian with the help of leaders of the evangelical Christian right,” the Daily Beast reports.
“Among the applicants for loans from the Small Business Administration’s stimulus package is the foundation arm of FreedomWorks, a conservative operation that advocates small government and made its name opposing bailouts,” the New York Times reports.
Andrew Yang is starting a new group to cement his ideas about 21st century work and technology firmly into the political “mainstream,” with an ambitious goal of advancing “a wave of new thinking in American politics,” BuzzFeed News reports.
Key takeaway: “His new group, which would allow him to build on his political platform until another campaign, will be structured as a 501(c)4 organization, meaning it can raise and spend unlimited amounts of money and is not obligated to disclose its donors.”
“Wealthy Republicans are funneling millions of dollars through a constellation of party-aligned groups to defend President Trump against impeachment by politically wounding his Democratic antagonists,” the Washington Examiner reports.
“Some of the biggest players in this coordinated effort are 501(c)4 organizations, issue advocacy nonprofit groups that do not have to disclose contributors. This option, which also permits unlimited donations, is allowing conservative groups to attack congressional Democrats and provide air cover to the president without tapping super PAC resources earmarked for the 2020 campaign.”
Forbes: “A nonprofit group with a bland name, Americans for Job Security, spent $5 million supporting Republicans in the 2010 midterms and $15 million denouncing former President Obama in the 2012 election, but until this week, the group never had to file disclosures showing where its money was coming from.”
“The biggest individual donor to the group appears to be Charles Schwab, the brokerage titan worth an estimated $7.8 billion. Over the span of three months in 2012, he donated nearly $9 million. Gap cofounder Doris Fisher—along with her sons Robert, John and William—gave another $9 million.”
Billionaire conservative icon David Koch has died at age 79, CBS News reports.
“The New York resident was suffering from deteriorating health as of late, according to a letter Koch’s older brother Charles Koch sent to company officials last summer.”
Former Gov. Chris Christie (R), “who built a political brand around unfiltered frank talk aimed at political opponents and constituents alike, is starting a think tank centered on something unexpected: Civility in politics,” WNYC reports.
Said Chrisite: “Unfortunately our politics have gotten so ugly and divisive in the country that people are not having civilized conversations.”
“Documents indicate that the National Rifle Association planned to purchase a luxury mansion in the Dallas area last year for the use of chief executive Wayne LaPierre,” the Washington Post reports.
“The discussions about the roughly $6 million purchase, which was not completed, are now under scrutiny by New York investigators. The transaction was slated to be made through a corporate entity that received a wire of tens of thousands of dollars from the NRA in 2018.”
“After recruiting thousands of donors for the American Conservative Union — the powerful organization behind the annual CPAC conference — a Republican political operative pushed the same contributors to give millions to a PAC that promised to go after then-President Barack Obama, but then steered much of their donations to himself and his partners,” ProPublica reports.
“The PAC, called the Conservative Majority Fund, has raised nearly $10 million since mid-2012 and continues to solicit funds to this day, primarily from thousands of steadfast contributors to conservative causes, many of them senior citizens. But it has made just $48,400 in political contributions to candidates and committees.”