You've Never Heard of GOP's Biggest Money Machine

Freedom Partners spent $250M, and there are Kochs involved

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Sep 12, 2013 11:43 AM CDT

(Newser) – The biggest single donor to conservative groups in the last election cycle was a group that, until today, was all but unknown. Freedom Partners spent $250 million in the 2012 race, according to a soon-to-be-filed tax document the group provided to Politico, more than any one group. All of that money came from about 200 donors who each gave "annual dues" of at least $100,000. The members are recruited at conferences held by David and Charles Koch, and Koch companies provide "minority" funding.

"There's a mystery around us that makes an interesting story," Freedom Partners' president says. "There's also a vilification that happens … when your opposition thinks you're secretive. Our members are proud to be part of [the organization]." That pride doesn't extend to publicly identifying themselves, but the document represents what Politico calls a "Rosetta Stone" for conservative groups, showing how many got their funds. Perhaps the biggest beneficiary: The Center to Protect Patient Rights, an anti-Obamacare advocacy outfit that received $115 million. Click for the full story, which includes a list of all groups that got cash from Freedom Partners.

In this April 11, 2011 file photo, David Koch, executive vice president of Koch Industries, attends a meeting of  the Economic Club of New York.
In this April 11, 2011 file photo, David Koch, executive vice president of Koch Industries, attends a meeting of the Economic Club of New York.   (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)
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