By Joe Romm
Last year, the New York Times revealed that petrochemical billionaire David Koch was among a small group of multibillionaires quietly promoting a presidential candidacy for former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney. Today, a report by investigative journalist Peter Stone states that Koch actually hosted Romney last summer for one of his first large fundraising parties. ThinkProgress has the story.
Romney’s team boasts veteran bigwig bundlers such as Woody Johnson, who owns the New York Jets; Wayne Berman, who chairs the lobbying firm Ogilvy Government Relations; and David Koch of Koch Industries. This trio and other big bundlers have done yeoman’s work already. Last August, Koch and his wife hosted an evening soiree at their home in the Hamptons for Romney. Since the November elections, Romney has done about one conference call a month with a nationwide group of some 300 fundraisers to keep them in the loop.The Koch brothers have historically played a key role in selecting GOP candidates. Last year, they guided a large contingent of climate change-denying candidates to victory using their Tea Party “Americans for Prosperity” and “No Climate Tax” front groups.
During the ’90s, Koch heavily supported Republican presidential nominee Bob Dole. At one point, Koch “turned his Gatsbyish estate in Southampton, New York, into the site for celebrating Dole’s 72nd birthday in July 1995, raising $150,000 for his campaign.” Dole reciprocated throughout his career; at one point offering legislation to suppress an investigation into Koch Industries’ massive theft of oil from Indian reservations and public lands.