Undeterred: Koch Brothers Plan Greater Political Involvement

Wednesday, 01 May 2013 08:11 PM

By Greg Richter

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Charles and David Koch, the billionaire brothers who spend a lot of their money and effort on conservative politics, say they aren't letting November's defeat stop them.

In fact, they plan on increasing their political involvement as Congressional elections loom again in 2014, The New York Times reports.

The Kochs don't yet know whether they'll get involved in primaries, but they do want to do more to promote GOP candidates who agree with their brand of conservatism, which focuses on smaller government and deregulation rather than social issues.

They also intend to redo their network, de-emphasizing groups that did not perform well in the last election cycle and boosting funding for those that did.

The Kochs held a two-day conference that the Times described as "equal parts revival and situation room." Strategists shared 2014's electoral battlegrounds as donors promised to contribute.

GOP rising stars such as Dr. Ben Carson, Govs. Nikki R. Haley of South Carolina and John R. Kasich of Ohio, and Sen.s Ted Cruz of Texas and Rand Paul of Kentucky also attended the event.

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Focus will be on young voters, as the Kochs aim to copy President Barack Obama's successful efforts in winning re-election.

"We’re looking into some of that cutting-edge technology," said Evan Feinberg, a former Rand Paul aid now heading up Generation Opportunity. "Obama for America did some really interesting things to connect to young people. We want to use some of those same ideas and try to learn from them.”

Also on the radar: Hispanic voters, whom the Kochs hope will be drawn to their small-government ideals – without the social conservatism they feel has hurt Republicans in 2012.

Still, the brothers face other conservative super PACs wanting the same donors, including Karl Rove's American Crossroads.

"Everybody wants your money,” said media mogul Stanley S. Hubbard told The Times. "I think they’re very smart on pointing out the things that are foolish. They run ads attacking what’s wrong. I’d like to see them point out what would be good policies, and why."


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