14 Groups Getting Koch Brothers Dark Money To Turn America Into A Right-Wing Playground

The billionaire Koch brothers – industrialists Charles and David from Koch Industries – like to say they aren’t involved in “politics” much. But like everything surrounding the right-wing brothers, that’s a lot of smoke and mirrors.

While the Kochs don’t necessarily directly involve themselves in the nitty gritty of electoral politics all the time through direct donations to candidates and parties, they keep themselves in the loop by funding a variety of pressure groups, advocacy organizations and non-profits that push a right wing ideology on a constant basis. These groups don’t wait for election years to be active, and are in the trenches at a micro-local level promoting a spectrum of causes that often happen to fatten the pockets of the brothers.

One such vehicle used by the Kochs is the Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce, registered with the IRS as a 501(c)(6) trade association (the Kochs also operate Freedom Partners Action Fund, which directly injects money in political races). In 2014 this group took in $126 million, spent about $41 million on overhead and poured the remaining cash on outside groups. Here they are:

  1. NRA Institute for Legislative Action ($4.9 million) – the lobbying arm of the pro-gun NRA who fights to attack any and all legislation aimed at curbing gun violence
  2. Americans for Prosperity ($22 million) – the biggest Koch group, they organize rallies, run ads against Democrats, truck in conservatives to bully members of Congress at town halls at other events
  3. Chamber of Commerce ($2 million) – the lobbying arm of big business, they have often targeted Democrats for not being as eager to appease business demands as the GOP
  4. Generation Opportunity ($14.2 million) – this is the Koch arm designed to attract young voters. They’ve produced ads and campaigns misinforming voters about the Affordable Care Act, attempting to get them to “opt out” of coverage. In one ad they showed Uncle Sam administering a gynecological exam to a young woman.
  5. Americans for Tax Reform ($100,000) – Republican mega-operative Grover Norquist’s pressure group that forces Republican candidates to sign a pledge promising not to raise taxes under any circumstance
  6. Heritage Action for America ($150,0000 – A right wing pressure group, part of the conservative think tank The Heritage Foundation, which attempts to force right-wing legislation through congress
  7. Concerned Veterans for America ($12.7 million) – with this group the Kochs attempt to hide their right-wing economic policies under the guise of “veteran’s issues”
  8. Center for Shared Services ($5.7 million) – the Kochs use this group as a recruiter and administrative support team for the other organizations in their dark money network
  9. Evangchr4 Trust ($5.7 million)- this group is used to disseminate Koch-friendly data through church-based spokespeople, specifically through pastor outreach
  10. American Energy Alliance ($2.4 million) – this is an outpost of the energy industry, used to attack clean energy initiatives and to smear climate change research
  11. Citizenlink ($1 million) – the political nonprofit division of the virulently anti-gay Focus on the Family
  12. Susan B. Anthony Group ($225,000) – an anti-abortion group
  13. Trees of Liberty ($400,000) – a PAC that attacked Democrats and boosted Republicans in races like the Iowa Senate race that elected Sen. Joni Ernst
  14. IACE Action ($95,000) and Colorado Women’s Alliance ($50,000) – groups that attacked Democratic Senator Mark Udall, helping to lead to his defeat in 2014

Featured image via MSNBC