Charles Koch, the billionaire conservative megadonor and chairman and CEO of Koch Industries, wrote a scathing Wall Street Journal op-ed Thursday lashing out at Democratic critics who have attempted to make him and his brother, David, a centrepiece of their midterm election strategy.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid — who has been at the forefront of the Democratic demonizing of the two brothers — loved it.
Reid discussed Koch’s editorial at a press conference on raising the minimum wage Thursday afternoon. He said the op-ed made it clear he is “getting under their skin.” Reid also relished in announcing Sen. Jerry Moran, a Republican from Kansas, had just read the entirety of the op-ed on the Senate floor.
“I’ve helped make them a little more infamous or famous, and I’m glad I’ve done that,” Reid said.
Reid launched his offensive against the Koch brothers about a month ago. In a conversation with Business Insider and other reporters last month, Reid said one of the main goals of his anti-Koch campaign was getting Republicans to publicly defend the Koch brothers and their company.
In a recent George Washington University poll, 52 per cent of voters said they had never heard of the billionaire brothers. An op-ed from one of them gives Reid another opportunity to drag the Kochs into the headlines.
In his op-ed, Koch argued he is fighting to “restore a free society.” Though he didn’t call out anyone by name, Koch called his critics “collectivists” and compared Democratic tactics to those of “despots.”
“Instead of encouraging free and open debate, collectivists strive to discredit and intimidate opponents. They engage in character assassination. (I should know, as the almost daily target of their attacks.),” Koch wrote.
“This is the approach that Arthur Schopenhauer described in the 19th century, that Saul Alinsky famously advocated in the 20th, and that so many despots have infamously practiced. Such tactics are the antithesis of what is required for a free society — and a telltale sign that the collectivists do not have good answers.”
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