Charles Koch doubles down on saying he 'screwed up' with partisanship, but he's still supporting a Republican in the Georgia runoffs
- Billionaire and GOP mega-donor Charles Koch has expressed regret for fueling partisanship for the second time in weeks.
- In a new interview with Axios, Koch said he "screwed up," doubling down down on his admission from his book that he helped partisanship go too far.
- Koch told Axios that he was "horrified" by some of what he was hearing from politicians he had helped and funded.
- Koch's superPAC is still funneling hundreds of thousands into the Georgia runoffs in support of Sen. David Perdue (R-Ga.).
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Billionaire megadonor Charles Koch is doubling down on saying he "screwed up" by fueling partisanship.
In a new interview with Axios, Koch expanded on the issues with partisanship that he detailed in his new book. He told interviewer Mike Allen about when he realized his mistake.
"Some of the politicians that we had helped get elected, I would see them on TV, and they would be talking about policies that were antithetical — against immigration, against criminal justice reform, against a more peaceful foreign policy," Koch said. "I was horrified."
Koch has poured millions into the GOP and conservative movements; he and his late brother David are credited with helping to create and shape the modern Tea Party. His $44.9 billion fortune comes from Koch Industries, the refinery business Koch inherited from his father.
Koch said he would vet (and support) politicians who seemed to be "champions" of his major issues, and then find them doing the "opposite."
Koch did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment.
A turn toward a policy-based strategy
Koch is now looking to uplift policies that help "empower" people, specifically citing foreign policy, immigration policy, and criminal justice reform.
In an email to Douglas Belkin of the Wall Street Journal, Koch congratulated President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris on their victory. He said he looks forward to "finding ways to work with them to break down the barriers holding people back."
Koch is still pouring money into the Georgia runoffs
However, as Axios reports, Koch's superPAC, Americans for Prosperity Action, is still funneling a sizeable sum into Georgia's January 5 runoff.
Brian Hooks, the coauthor of Koch's book and CEO of Stand Together, Koch's philanthropic endeavor, said they continued to support Georgia's Republican Sen. David Perdue, who could be the deciding vote keeping the senate in Republican control after the runoff election scheduled for early January. Hooks said he and Koch think Perdue "can actually make a difference if he's returned to the Senate."
Perdue was a co-sponsor of the 2017 RAISE Act, which would've curbed legal immigration into the US; Perdue has also previously downplayed the impact of climate change.
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