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Paying to Play

September 2, 2010

In the New Yorker’s ambitious article, “Covert Operations: The billionaire brothers who are waging a war against Obama,” reporter Jane Mayer explores the actions and inclinations of Charles and David Koch of Koch Industries, Inc.  This mighty conglomerate, the second-largest private company in the country, holds a big umbrella under which Lycra is produced, Georgia-Pacific lumber is processed, and oil refineries across the country are operated.  Each of their 13F filings discloses millions of dollars in institutional ownership.

Staunch libertarians, the Koch brothers “have quietly given more than a hundred million dollars” to “nonprofit groups that criticize environmental regulation and support lower taxes for industry.”  They have been linked, through the think tanks and charitable foundations they finance, to the emergence of the Tea Party and the recent success of many of its candidates and spokespeople.

If the Koch brothers hold the belief that government “should be reduced to only one function: the protection of individual rights,” it can be assumed that they are not pleased with the SEC’s recently adopted limits on political contributions from investment advisers.  Search “pay to play” or “political contribution” on our Law Firm Memos page for legal insight on these regulations.

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