Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Koch-Blocked

The Atlantic has a piece with a title that threatens to be reasonable--"The Democratic Party's Foolish Koch Obsession"--but it's more than author Alex Roarty can manage.

Lately, the Dems have gone Koch-crazy.  Majority Leader Harry Reid has condemned them by name in his speeches--kind of scary to see private citizens not breaking any laws called "un-American" on the floor of the Senate.  You'd think Democrats would say this sort of activity shouldn't be encouraged.  But according to Roarty, what's wrong with this is it doesn't work.  It's "foolish" because no one cares. Polls show the public has other things on its mind.

It's not as if the Koch brothers are peripheral to the 2014 midterm elections. Their most visible political group, Americans for Prosperity, has spent roughly $30 million pummeling Democrats, mostly senators up for reelection, for their support of Obamacare. With good reason, Democrats worry that money has fundamentally shifted the 2014 map in the GOP's favor, especially in Southern battlegrounds such as Louisiana and North Carolina.

Sounds like Democrats being foolish again, blaming the messenger, not the message.  The Kochs may be helping to get out the word, but any fundamental shift in voter preference comes from the unpopularity of Obamacare and the weakness of the economy.

Roarty also notes some of the Dem candidates have taken money from the Kochs for one reason or another in the past, which threatens to make any attacks look like hypocrisy.  This is missing the forest for the trees.  The Kochs are merely one source of funding, so to concentrate on them as if they're something different or special is dishonest.  For instance, there are millions of dollars coming in from all over the country to defeat Kentucky's Republican Senator Mitch McConnell, whom many see as very beatable.  Good or bad, that's how politics works.

Indeed, over the past few elections, if the money has been going anywhere, it's to the Dems.  No one has ever raised money like President Obama.  And if you look at top fifteen organizations that have been the biggest political donors over the past 25 years, ten of them are pro-Democrat and the rest are neutral.  (And then, of course, there are the billions and billions of dollars worth of editorials--and some would say biased reporting--delivered by the media, most of whom are Democrats.)

I can't blame the Democrats for striking out at any available target in an election year that looks like trouble.  But if they honestly believe the Kochs are the real problem, then they may be in bigger trouble than anyone thinks.

3 Comments:

Blogger ColumbusGuy said...

Mightn't it be true? They've got the whole dam, sure, but it's sprung a leak and they're trying to put their finger in it. Andy why not? When it goes, so goes the valley.

3:34 AM, March 19, 2014  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can not get by the abuse of the apostrophe in this post. Unless the brothers' last name is actually " Koch' "

As to the substance, fools and their money are soon parted and I have a feeling the bogeyman boys will go the way of other dabblers

4:11 AM, March 19, 2014  
Blogger LAGuy said...

Anon--

I agree with your first paragraph and have made changes.

The second paragraph doesn't mean anything--the Koch brothers don't have enough influence to change much to begin with, so if they go away, you'll hardly notice.

10:36 AM, March 19, 2014  

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