AFP's Phillips: Reid's Attack on Koch Brothers 'Outrageous'

Friday, 28 Feb 2014 02:07 PM

By Lisa Barron

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Tim Phillips, the president of Americans for Prosperity, has blasted Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid for his tirade against Charles and David Koch on the Senate floor Wednesday.

The Nevada Democrat attacked the billionaire Koch brothers, who have backed Americans for Prosperity, for the anti-Obamacare ads the group has run over the past six months, calling them "lies."

"Isn't it ironic? I thought the left liked to decry the days of McCarthyism, right?"  Phillips told Newsmax TV's J.D. Hayworth on "America's Forum" Friday.

"And here you have the majority leader walking on the floor of the Senate kicking off a middle school temper tantrum where he actually calls two individuals, Charles and David Koch, who have created literally, and I mean this literally, tens of thousands of jobs for folks from all walks of life across this country. He calls them un-American. It's pretty outrageous." 

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The veteran political strategist also rejected Reid's claims that there are Obamacare success stories that are being ignored.

"I have seen millions of Americans lose their health insurance, watched more Americans lose the full-time status of their employment, right?" he said. "Because businesses are trying to get ready for Obamacare, and now we're starting to see Americans having higher out-of-pocket expenses or higher premiums or not being able to see the doctors they want to see.

"This has disrupted our entire healthcare selection, which wasn't perfect, and you've got to keep working to make it better. But Obamacare has been a disaster for most Americans. That's why the left is in such trouble at this very moment politically, because the biggest policy of the last generation, Obamacare, is such a failure for individual Americans."

As for Reid singling out AFP, Phillips said, "It's clearly a political tactic. They have three basic options at this moment: A, defend Obamacare. Well they can't do that. This law is demonstrably hurting so many Americans and so they can't do that. B, change the subject to another issue that they think favors them. They tried that with the president's State of the Union speech and other efforts where they tried to turn to minimum wage or income inequality, but the public knows that Obamacare is the issue that's harming and impacting them most adversely right now. So that didn't work."

He continued, "Then the third option, which they're trying right now, is to demonize the messenger, which is why they're attacking Charles and David Koch and Americans for Prosperity and trying to discredit us.

"I don't think it's going to work. When Americans weigh the impact that Obamacare is having on their own individual healthcare and the healthcare of their loved ones versus these attacks on two pretty darn good Americans, we'll win that exchange in the end."

Phillips also argued that Reid forgot about liberals who are providing significant financial resources to support their beliefs.

"George Soros for a decade or more has pumped hundreds of millions of dollars in for the left, and you can do a search right now, a Google search, and you won't find a single time that Americans for Prosperity have attacked George Soros on the grounds that he shouldn't be spending money as he sees fit," he said.

"He's an American. Every American ought to have the right and even the responsibility to get involved and so we don't decry that. It's a good thing. Now, we disagree with him on every issue but we don't attack him for being involved."

Phillips went on to accuse the left of hypocrisy.

"When Hollywood producers or when Mr. Soros or this new global warming hedge fund billionaire, Mr. [Tom] Steyer, get involved, they're seen as really standing up for what's right and virtuous for America. And then when individuals on the free market side do it, they're just greedy, corporate interest-type guys," he noted.

"So there's a double standard, and I can tell you that at Americans for Prosperity, we're not going to attack folks for just getting involved. Mr. Steyer is a global warming alarmist in our view. He has every right to go out and spend his money and his time trying to bring about the America that he thinks is best, but so do we."

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