Confused Hillary Clinton Rejects Charles Koch 'Endorsement'
On Saturday, billionaire philanthropist Charles Koch admitted that maybe, just maybe, he would see Hillary Clinton as being preferable to the Republican presidential nominee come November. Clinton, sensing an attack from the "vast right-wing conspiracy," shot back, immediately rejecting the endorsement and demonstrating her own ignorance about Koch.
That Clinton took the philanthropist's comments completely out of context is bad enough, but her attack against him is even more laughable. No, Mrs. Clinton, Koch wasn't trying to endorse-attack you, like you think he did to Bernie Sanders. Indeed, Charles Koch is one of the truly principled political reformers of our era. He praised Bernie Sanders because the Vermont senator's stance against corporate welfare lines up with his own, and he only mentioned Clinton as an attack on the most likely Republican nominee.
Nevertheless, Clinton could not stomach being praised -- even as merely a less worse option -- by the billionaire philanthropist. "Not interested in endorsements from people who deny climate science and try to make it harder for people to vote," she (or her staff) declared on her official Twitter account.
Not interested in endorsements from people who deny climate science and try to make it harder for people to vote. https://t.co/TWN4zYhMBh
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) April 24, 2016
This could not be more laughable, considering that Koch has supported such radical anti-voting measures as restoring the voting rights of ex-felons. While it is theoretically possible this philanthropist at some point donated to a conservative group which later advocated for anti-voter-fraud measures, his strongest advocacy has been for voting rights, not against them. Furthermore, science is always a work in progress, and denying the legitimacy of any climate scientist who is not an alarmist only makes you look foolish.
More importantly, Koch never even came close to saying he was even considering endorsing the Democratic frontrunner. "We would have to believe her actions would have to be quite different from her rhetoric, let me put it that way," he said. His comments were much less about supporting anything Hillary Clinton has ever done, and more about criticizing the two most likely Republican nominees.
Such a move from Mr. Koch should be no surprise to anyone familiar with his goals. Such a dedicated libertarian would have trouble supporting a real estate tycoon who boasts about profiting from corporate welfare, and a Texas senator who declares his aim to "make the sand glow" in the Middle East. It is possible that Koch would back Cruz, due to that candidate's constant opposition to big government, but even that could only happen if the Texas senator explained away the more aggressive parts of his foreign policy rhetoric (something Koch explicitly criticized in the interview this past weekend).
As many familiar with the Koch platform should expect, the philanthropist had the harshest words for Mr. Trump. He said the Republican frontrunner's call to have all Muslims "registered" was "reminiscent of Nazi Germany. I mean -- that's monstrous as I said at the time."
The whole question of Clinton only emerged when Koch said that "in some ways" Bill Clinton's presidency had been better than that of George W. Bush. Many conservatives would agree, because as the philanthropist explained, "As far as the growth of government, the increase in spending, it was 2½ times under Bush that it was under Clinton."
The billionaire insisted that his network would not get involved in the primary campaign and has not done so. "We haven't put a penny in any of these campaigns, pro or con. That's not what we do. What we're trying to do is build alliances to make the country better."
Next Page: But didn't Koch back Scott Walker and Marco Rubio? Why is Clinton so afraid of his "support?"