The rich right-wing billionaire nutjobs that have been terrorizing Democrats up and down the ballot, Charles and David Koch (known as the Koch Brothers), have spent billions of dollars to help elect Republican candidates over the last few decades.
But now they’ve threatened to close up their “piggy bank” if Republicans don’t destroy Obamacare and give even more tax cuts to the rich. At a weekend donor retreat attended by at least 18 Republican elected officials, the Koch Brothers as well as other big money donors threatened to withold support for the midterm Congressional elections until they got the laws passed that they paid for in the last election.
Here’s what one big wealthy Republican donor, Doug Deason, said in the meeting,
“Get Obamacare repealed and replaced, get tax reform passed. Get it done and we’ll open it back up… I’m not going to [host fundraisers] because we’re closing the checkbook until you get some things done.”
This quote is so very revealing. It’s a rich guy saying that until you pass bills that I want, including bills that directly benefit him financially, that he’s not going to give politicians any more money. Paying for public policy is the definition of political bribery, and here’s this guy basically admitting to doing it.
For so long, Republicans have opposed free and fair elections reforms that would get big money out of our public elections and make it so that any citizen could run for public office. Conservatives object to having any laws around elections and demand that candidates rely on private donors to fund their campaigns, and they argue this under the guise that no bribery is taking place.
No, you see, rich people are just supporting people who share their ideology (you know, the ideology of helping rich people every chance you get because that’s what Jesus would do), but they refuse to acknowledge that the vast majority of people and corporations donating to campaigns are doing so in order to get a return on investment.
So this rich donor at this rich guy’s donor retreat is revealing that for the lie we all know that it is – he’s just put’s it out there, pass policy or no contributions for you. And it’s not like he’s just making an argument on behalf of public policy in a room of academics, he’s threatening a room full of actual members of Congress.
Republican Representative Dave Brat attended the meeting to kiss the feet of these billionaire donors and has this to say for his electoral chances if Republicans fail to deliver on their promise to wrecking-ball the progress of the 20th Century:
“If we don’t get healthcare, none of us are coming back. We said for seven years you’re gonna repeal Obamacare. It’s nowhere near repealed. We don’t get taxes through, we’re all going home. Pack the bags.”
So, on one hand, you have billionaires threatening to withhold campaign cash and on the other hand, you have Congressman crying poverty and sounding the alarm bells for the Congressional midterm elections. It’s like some dystopian version of the Sadie Hawkins dance where donor and members of Congress show up to partner up in screwing our country over.
But for Democrats and Progressives, this is a huge win-win – if we resist Republican efforts to overturn Obamacare, not only do 23 million Americans get to keep their healthcare but we also sideline $100’s of millions of dollars in Republican campaign contributions, so let’s do everything we can to make sure that Trumpcare dies, as it should, in the Senate.