Koch Network: Future Support for Lawmakers Based on How They Acted Before, During Capitol Breach

January 14, 2021 Updated: January 14, 2021

The Koch network’s nonprofit group and its linked political action committee (PAC) may not support lawmakers who took certain actions before and during the Jan. 6 Capitol breach.

“We decide to support candidates based on their record and ability to lead on policy that will help people improve their lives,’’ Emily Seidel, the CEO of Americans for Prosperity and senior adviser for the super PAC Americans for Prosperity Action, said in a statement to news outlets.

“With that standard in mind, lawmakers’ actions leading up to and during last week’s insurrection will weigh heavy in our evaluation of future support. And we will continue to look for ways to support those policymakers who reject the politics of division and work together to move our country forward.”

The Koch network was founded by Charles and David Koch, brothers who are businessmen, philanthropists, and GOP megadonors. It was rebranded as Stand Together last year as Charles Koch vowed to counter “destructive ideas like socialism and nationalism.”

Koch, one of the richest men in the world, wrote in a recent book that he regretted spending only on conservative causes. The network donated money to several Democratic candidates in 2020. “Unite a diversity of people behind a common goal,” Koch told the Wall Street Journal. “That’s our approach today.”

Epoch Times Photo
Founder of Stand Together Charles Koch and CEO and Chairman of Stand Together Brian Hooks prepare for the Stand Together Summit in Colorado Springs, Colo., on June 29, 2019. (Daniel Boczarski/Getty Images for Stand Together)

Republicans who supported electoral objections to votes from Arizona and Pennsylvania could see funding from the network dry up, the statement suggests. One hundred and 25 Republicans objected to Arizona’s votes while 145 did so for Pennsylvania’s votes.

Protesters stormed the Capitol during the vote counting session on Jan. 6, interrupting the debate on Arizona’s objection. Lawmakers, pundits, and others have since tried blaming the storming on those who objected to votes and President Donald Trump, impeaching the president for incitement of insurrection on Wednesday.

A slew of corporations have halted donations to the Republicans who objected, including American Express, AT&T, and Airbnb.

The Republicans have largely defended their actions, pointing out how Democrats objected to results in 2017 and 2005, among other years.

“Some wondered why I stuck with my objection following the violence at the Capitol,” Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) said this week. “The reason is simple: I will not bow to a lawless mob, or allow criminals to drown out the legitimate concerns of my constituents.”

The statement from Americans for Prosperity came after Seidel, the CEO, issued a statement on Jan. 6 condemning the violence at the Capitol.

“We join fellow Americans who are watching the violence at the U.S. Capitol with grave concern. Violence is not the answer and never an acceptable way to resolve problems in our country,” she said. “Our prayers are for the safety of those in the Capitol, law enforcement, and those people who came to peacefully protest but have now been caught up in this violence. This must stop now.”

Follow Zachary on Twitter: @zackstieber