Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Unearthing Paul Ryan’s 1% Connections

Original Link: http://www.commonblog.com/2012/08/16/unearthing-paul-ryans-1-connections/

By Phillip Ung

Presumptive GOP Vice Presidential nominee Paul Ryan is famous for his detailed knowledge of the federal budget. This can be seen in his 2010 budget proposal calling for deep cuts in federal spending and converting Medicare into a voucher system.

Hiding behind Ryan’s wonky image, however, are troubling ties to billionares like Sheldon Adelson, the Koch brothers, Cliff Asness and Paul Singer who have channeled Tea Party anger into a $400 million political machine.

Earlier this week, Ryan took a break from campaigning to spend time with billionaire casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, who has spent nearly $50 million to defeat President Obama to date. Adelson, who has a close relationship with Mitt Romney, is under investigation by the SEC and the Department of Justice on allegations of bribery in China.

That’s not all- Adelson is also being investigated for money laundering by the United States Attorney’s office in Los Angeles. Adelson, who has an estimated network of $21 billion has denied all allegations and has emerged as the largest donor to Romney supported PAC’s.

Ryan ties to super wealthy began with the Koch brothers, who have donated more than a $100,000 to his campaign and leadership PAC. Their relationship has since transformed into one that has enriched Ryan’s campaign coffers as well as his career. Ryan has emerged as a skeptic of mainstream climate science and voted against new energy efficiency standards.

Ryan has emerged as a skeptic of mainstream climate change allying himself with Koch affiliated research and activist groups.. He is one of very few elected officials to attend the Kochs’ biannual conferences, where wealthy donors sit in on seminars about runaway government spending and supposed “climate change myths”.

Ryan has also developed relationships with other people in the Koch orbit, like Cliff Asness and Paul Singer, libertarian-minded financiers known for their open letters blasting President Obama. Both have donated money to Ryan’s campaign and are on a first name basis with him.

All in all, Paul Ryan has much to gain from his connections to the high and mighty. However, he owes us an explanation on how he plans to preserve his supposed values of, fairness, democracy, and equality, when it comes time to pay back the campaign favors the Adelsons’ and the Kochs’ of the world, have done for him. With the economy and jobs of primary concern among voters, that question may well determine the outcome of the election come November.

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