Trump's Spat With Koch Brothers Just Went Very Public

Their conservative movement is a 'total joke,' says the president
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 31, 2018 10:25 AM CDT
David, left, and Charles Koch.   (Phelan M. Ebenhack, Bo Rader/The Wichita Eagle via AP)

(Newser) – Amid a morning flurry of tweets, President Trump took aim at two powerful figures on the right: brothers David and Charles Koch. "The globalist Koch Brothers, who have become a total joke in real Republican circles, are against Strong Borders and Powerful Trade," the president tweeted. "I never sought their support because I don't need their money or bad ideas," he continued, adding, "Their network is highly overrated." His comments, however, come after the Kochs lobbed an attack of their own at a weekend forum in Colorado. Coverage:

  • Kochs' criticism: At a Koch network gathering in Colorado Springs, Charles Koch criticized Trump's tariffs and protectionist trade policies and suggested he's open to supporting Democratic candidates who are more in line with the Kochs' free-trade and libertarian views, reports the National Review. "I don't care what initials are in front or after somebody's name," he told the group.
  • Turning point? A video during the forum showed businesses supposedly shuttered because of retaliatory tariffs, notes Politico, which says "the open hostilities at this weekend's conference came as something of a surprise." At Vanity Fair, Tina Nguyen sounds a familiar note: "The Kochs' hostility toward Trump isn't new, though their rhetoric seems to mark a turning point."

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