How might campaign contributions and financial support affect voting in Congress? Let’s peek behind the curtain and see if we can infer how dollars might translate into votes.
This is a brief overview of the Keystone XL pipeline vote and the Koch brothers financial impact on Congress:
One of the biggest “winners” in the Keystone XL pipeline project, if approved, will be the Koch brothers, as they have extensive holdings in the Alberta tar sands. The Koch brothers’ tentacles reach deep down into PACs, NGO’s, and think tanks. Additionally, they own many other companies and have various business interests in countless others which, in their own right, contribute to the corporatocracy in the US through separate contribution mechanisms. For a partial list of products and services belonging to or having an ownership stake by the Koch brothers, here is a website with examples: http://www.inspirationgreen.com/koch-brothers-products.html
If someone wanted to take the time (and maybe they already have), they could, I suspect, look at each politician who recently voted in support of the Keystone XL pipeline project and trace back their support to gas and oil concerns. Frankly, I just don’t have that kind of time, but I WILL show how the biggest recipients of Koch brothers money voted on KXL.
Let’s start with Tom Cotton, the largest recipient of Koch brothers’ dirty money:
How about Pat Toomey, who is number 2 on the list of recipients:
And the brothers really got their money’s worth with contestant number 3, aka “The Turtle.” The Koch brothers contributed in many other ways to McConnell’s recent midterm election campaign victory, with an eye on owning the Senate through this newly empowered Majority leader:
How about Ted Cruz? I especially like how Cruz nonchalantly states that, hey, since the Canadians are going to “molest” the tar sands anyway, we ought to get on board:
And here’s Thomas Coburn:
Let’s check in with Mike Pompeo:
…or how about John Cornyn?
And let’s not forget Rand Paul:
I think the most politically savvy of them all is Marco Rubio, who is an “up and coming” recipient of Koch brothers’ money:
…and he talks a good talk about Keystone XL:
But when it came down to the day of the vote either for Keystone, he was conveniently all the way across the country, fundraising. Brilliant strategy, really, except that people COULD, if they really wanted to, see that he supported the project. But he’ll probably be able to talk his way out of it (when he runs for President), thus a real “win-win” for him (and, by extensions, the Koch brothers).