Big-time GOP donors push Koch brothers to support Trump

A small number of wealthy Republican donors associated with the Koch family‘s political apparatus have privately implored brothers David and Charles to abandon opposition to GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump.

Known critics of the New York real estate mogul, an opposition rooted in dissatisfaction with several of his political positions and personal temperament, the Kochs have determined to withhold support for Trump, preferring to prioritize 2016 congressional races.

The Kochs spent slightly over $400 million on political causes in 2015 and have pledged a further $1 billion for the 2016 election.

“I don’t think it’s impossible, or beyond the realm of possibility, that at some point the Kochs are going to get involved,” said Doug Deason, who is affiliated with the Koch political organization.

Deason added he finds Charles Koch has adopted a “wait-and-see approach” to Trump’s candidacy.

Donors are hoping prescient issues such as judicial nominees will entice the Kochs as it did other donors who were previously skeptical or outright opposed to a Trump presidency.

“A lot of us are giving a lot of money to the Kochs, and what we would expect is that they would do all they can to see to it that the right Supreme Court justices are selected.  Supreme Court justices will last a lot longer than any president,” said broadcasting magnate Stanley Hubbard, once an opponent of Trump, who now backs the nominee.

Encouragement to support Trump from the small group of GOP donors comes ahead of the Koch-sponsored Freedom Partners seminar at the Broadmoor Resort in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Scheduled to begin on July 30, the conference is expected to examine political efforts in key states and funding for academic think tanks.  Issues such as criminal justice reform, government spending run amok and the drag created by occupational licensure, all issues crucial to the Koch family, are assumed to be addressed.

Talk of Trump’s candidacy is also likely to be a topic of discussion.


[Reuters] [Photo courtesy PBS]