WASHINGTON — As Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid resumed his polemic against the Koch brothers Tuesday, Republicans were quick to respond, noting they are not the only ones with a generous billionaire in their corner.
The debate on the Senate floor quickly turned to Tom Steyer, the former San Francisco hedge fund manager who is seizing on the same loose campaign finance laws as Charles and David Koch to funnel millions of dollars into campaigns. Only in the case of Steyer, profiled recently in The Times as the emerging liberal counterweight to the Kochs, the spending is geared toward defeating candidates skeptical of global warming.
“I noted with interest the majority leader was hammering the Koch brothers again today, and I wondered why he left out billionaire Tom Steyer, who plans to spend as much as $100 million pushing the issue of climate change in the 2014 election and appears positioned to rival the deep-pocketed Koch brothers,” said Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).
“It strikes me as curious that if we are going to demonize people for exercising their constitutional rights to go out and speak and participate in the political process, we would just pick out the people that are opposed to us and leave out the people who are in favor of us.”