Saturday, June 7, 2014

NY Times front-pages 1980 Libertarian campaign

Quixotic ’80 Campaign Gave Birth to Kochs’ Powerful Network - - Nicholas Confessiore, Sunday New York Times, A1:

May 17, 2014 - ""He backed the full legalization of abortion and the repeal of laws that criminalized drug use, prostitution and homosexuality. He attacked campaign donation limits and assailed the Republican star Ronald Reagan as a hypocrite who represented 'no change whatsoever' from Jimmy Carter and the Democrats.

"It was 1980, and the candidate was David H. Koch, a 40-year-old bachelor living in a rent-[controlled] apartment in New York City. Mr. Koch, the vice-presidential nominee for the Libertarian Party, and his older brother Charles, one of the party’s leading funders, were mounting a long-shot assault on the fracturing American political establishment.

"The Kochs had invested hundreds of thousands of dollars in the burgeoning libertarian movement.... By the end of 1974, [Charles] Koch had helped found what would become the Cato Institute, today one of the country’s leading libertarian research institutions. He was joined in that effort by Ed Crane, chairman of the three-year-old Libertarian Party. The two men believed that libertarian ideas had to be more accessible to the average person if they were to change the country. Over dinners at Charles Koch’s house in Wichita, Kan., and in correspondence with both brothers and their mother, Mr. Crane worked to persuade the family that a vibrant party organization was critical to advancing that goal.

"The family would become the Libertarian Party’s most important donors....

"The Supreme Court handed the Kochs an important weapon in a 1976 decision in Buckley v. Valeo. The court opened two loopholes in a two-year-old campaign finance law that had placed tight controls on what candidates, parties, and private individuals could spend on campaigns: A candidate could spend an unlimited amount of his or her money running for office, and an individual was free to spend an unlimited amount of money promoting candidates so long as the spending was not coordinated with them.

The next three years witnessed the birth of the Koch political apparatus. Charles Koch sought to recruit like-minded businessmen who would invest in the libertarian cause, an embryonic version of the Koch-supervised donor club that poured $400 million into the 2012 campaign."

“'Charles was giving as much to the Libertarians as he was paying out in dividends,' William [Koch] told The Times in a 1986 interview. 'Pretty soon we would get the reputation that the company and the Kochs were crazy'... William Koch tried to seize control of the company in a boardroom coup. He accused Charles of mismanaging the firm and set in motion a bitter legal battle....

"Within a few years, a new faction won control of the Libertarian Party, and Charles and David Koch gradually withdrew."

Read more:
'via Blog this'

No comments:

Post a Comment