Skip to comments.Kochs: ‘Disturbing behavior’ from Obama campaign looks to limit free speech
Posted on 02/25/2012 3:11:23 PM PST by Libloather
Kochs: Disturbing behavior from Obama campaign looks to limit free speech
By Jonathan Easley - 02/25/12 12:55 PM ET
Conservative activists and oil magnates Charles and David Koch slammed the Obama campaign for what they called disturbing behavior that is at odds with the constitutional right to free speech.
The allegations were made in an open letter written by Phillip Ellender, president of public affairs for the Koch Companies, in response to a fundraising letter from Obama campaign manager Jim Messina, in which Messina accused the Kochs of bankrolling Tea Party extremism and profiting from jacking up prices at the pump.
A number of media outlets have reported that the Koch brothers were looking to spend upwards of $200 million on various conservative activist groups, including the group they founded Americans for Prosperity (AFP), in an attempt to unseat President Obama.
Koch Industries has repeatedly denied that the explicit stated purpose of AFP is to defeat the president and contends that the organization is not simply funded by the Kochs, but rather by tens of thousands of members and contributors from across the country.
Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum campaigned at an event of the Michigan branch of the AFP on Saturday.
While the AFP is focused on fiscally conservative initiatives, the Kochs are significant donors to an array of organizations that, whether it is their stated purpose or not, are staunchly opposed to the presidents policies.
The letter took a less nuanced position against the Obama campaign claim that the Koch brothers were responsible for rising prices at the gas pump, an issue the presidents rivals have tried to pin on him in recent weeks.
It is false that our business model is to make millions by jacking up prices at the pump, the letter reads in part. We own no gasoline stations and the part of our business you allude to, oil and gas refining, actually lowers the price of gasoline by increasing supply. Either you simply misunderstand the way commodities markets work or you are misleading your supporters and the rest of the American people.
Ellender closed the letter by saying that the campaigns attack on the Kochs, as private citizens who disagree with the presidents policies, is anathema to the way a free society should operate.
That is why it is troubling to see a national political campaign apparently target individual citizens and private companies for some perceived political advantage, the letter said. I also hope the President will reflect on how the approach the campaign is using is at odds with our national values and the constitutional right to free speech.
That mirrors the argument in favor of super-PACs, which is that campaign donations are a matter of free speech and should not be limited.
The president told his donors in early February that they should support the super-PAC Priorities USA, which backs him. Republican-backing super-PACs outraised Priorities USA by millions of dollars in January.
Of the Obama campaign is at odds with our national values and constitution. This is the real Obama. He is the enemy of the Constitutional republic of the USA.
What a stark difference. The Koch’s are responsible for hundreds if not thousands of jobs and paychecks, while Comrade Mau-Mau is doing everything possible to kill jobs and paychecks.
I sure wish democrats would pull their heads out of their asses and realize it.
Home groan (or grown) libertarians are better than a Kenyan.
They'd rather go down with their country and their first black president.
Fascists need to invent enemies for their brain-dead, goosestepping drones.
Can Buckwheat get his followers’ fat mitts out of the jumbo potato chip bags long enough to goosestep down the street and crap on police cars?
The Nixon administration got a lot of flak for sending out Spiro Agnew to make attacks on enemies of the administration (”nattering nabobs of negativism”), but now the President lowers himself to that role. Plus there was no real danger to free speech under Nixon since most of the media was hostile to the administration. Obama, from day one, has wanted to suppress all opposing viewpoints (the war on Fox, etc.) while he enjoys the whole-hearted support of most of the media (apart from a few left-wing nutjobs who don’t think he has gone far enough fast enough).
Dictators don’t believe in free speech. So what else is new?
Obama hates America.
"...any target can always say, 'Why do you center on me when there are others to blame as well?' When your 'freeze the target,' you disregard these [rational but distracting] arguments.... Then, as you zero in and freeze your target and carry out your attack, all the 'others' come out of the woodwork very soon. They become visible by their support of the target...'
"One acts decisively only in the conviction that all the angels are on one side and all the devils on the other." (pps.127-134)
Saul Alinksky, Rules for Radicals
Team Obama is out there testing every excuse known to man to "prove' they're not the ones responsible for rising gas prices. Team Obama knows 'the press' will buy anything they offer - this 'Kochs' thing is a trial balloon. Next it'll be Halliburton, or Exxon or the Bush Brothers or Tea Party members...
In the old days they could pick anyone to slam and the press would run with it. Doesn't work that way now - not enough people trust the press to have the scam work without focus groups. You suck more New York Times... (thrown in because they started the slide that destroyed journalism)
Is there an estimate out there about how many jobs the Koch brothers are responsible for creating and how many obama is responsible for destroying?
The world needs more Koch brothers and one less obama.