Governors

Bruce Rauner: The Everyman with the Cayman Islands Account

In last month‘s edition of Bruce Rauner: The Everyman, we brought you to his $100,000 parking spot in Chicago. This month, it’s off to the Cayman Islands, the offshore tax haven where Rauner has been parking his millions, according to the Chicago Sun-Times. Although Rauner has refused to release his most recent tax returns in full, the Sun-Times ties parts of Rauner’s fortune to five different Cayman Islands investments.

If you want to accessorize like Rauner, all you’ll need is an $18 watch. But if you want to offshore bank in the Cayman Islands like Rauner does, that’ll run you a minimum $500,000 – $1 million investment, according an expert quoted in the Sun-Times. Of course, that’s but pocket change for Rauner, who reported $53 million in earnings in 2012.

Rauner isn’t just sending his millions down to the Caymans for a little tax-free R&R. He’s also been using [...]

Read more after the jump.

Senate

Koch brothers investing in Oregon’s Monica Wehby

It might be the dog days of summer, but Freedom Partners, the Kochs’ “secret bank,” appears to be staying busy by going on a multi-state airtime spending spree. Recently, we noted that Freedom Partners had bought up around $3 million of airtime in North Carolina in support of extreme Conservative Thom Tillis’ Senate campaign. This week, Oregon’s Monica Wehby becomes the latest of the Kochs’ handpicked extreme Senate candidates to benefit from the shadowy group’s spending.

According to The Oregonian, on Wednesday, Freedom Partners will launch a $3.6 million television advertising campaign “aimed at unseating Democratic Sen. Jeff Merkley and electing Republican challenger Monica Wehby.” The campaign, scheduled to continue through Election Day, will benefit Wehby, whose extreme stances have her lagging in the polls. But as the old saying goes and Wehby surely knows, “nothing good comes for free.” [...]

Read more after the jump.

PresidentialSenate

Welcome Back to Iowa, Rand!

Last week, Iowa Republican Senate candidate Joni Ernst’s spokesperson admitted that in a “perfect world,” Ernst would “support doing away with the” renewable fuel standard (RFS), a critical component of Iowa’s economy that supports thousands of jobs. Well, Joni must just be thrilled that Rand Paul is starting a three day swing through Iowa today, because Rand is already living in her “perfect world” – at a 2012 event in Des Moines, Paul expressed his opposition to the RFS.

Who else opposes the RFS? Why none other than the Koch brothers, of course. Koch Industries lobbied for the “Renewable Fuel Standard Repeal Act,” and the Kochs’ main political entity Americans for Prosperity wants to “permanently eliminate” the RFS. Conveniently enough, AFP has already spent $2 MILLION on ads attacking Ernst’s opponent this year to prop up her Tea Party candidacy, while members of the Koch family and Koch Industries have directly [...]

Read more after the jump.

A.B. in the NewsA.B. in the NewsNewsroomThe Wire

President Brad Woodhouse Op-Ed: The TRUTH About the Koch Agenda

Don’t miss American Bridge President Brad Woodhouse’s new op-ed on CNN.com on the truth behind the Koch agenda, and visit RealKochFacts.com to learn more.

They called Social Security “the most serious threat to the future stability of our society next to the threat of nuclear war.” They wanted to abolish all minimum wage laws, while giving tax breaks to the rich and big oil. All in a self-serving attempt to drive the policy discourse further toward their extreme ideals to benefit their own bottom line.

Voters deserve to know the truth behind the Kochs’ self-serving agenda and just what they stand for. So, at American Bridge, we’ve launched RealKochFacts.com, a new research and rapid response resource to highlight the truth about the Koch agenda and what it means for working families in states around the country.

You can read the full op-ed over on CNN.com

A.B. in the NewsThe Wire

Founder David Brock Talks With POLITICO

In the most recent Open Mike with Mike Allen of POLITICO, he chats with American Bridge founder David Brock.

Mike Allen: “The Clinton camp is pushing back hard against Karl Rove’s statement the other day.”

David Brock: “If you’re asking does it backfire, the answer to that is yes. I think Rove was so grotesque in the overstepping that it ended up being a big mistake, even though I understand what he was trying to do. This was really part of a pattern on Karl Rove’s part. We’ve seen it before — sleazy, personal attacks for partisan reasons.”

Allen: “Of the 2016 Republican candidates, does that look like a target-rich environment or are these guys kind of boring?

Brock: “We’ve been tracking all the potentials. Chris Christie can be fun to track. As we know, he can be incredibly colorful. Rand Paul can also be an interesting kind of person to track. I don’t find him to be plain vanilla or boring. This is a pretty massive intelligence-gathering operation we have going here.”

You watch the full Open Mike video over at POLITICO here.

Governors

What You Need to Know Before Chris Christie “Clears” Himself

To: Interested Parties
From: Brad Woodhouse, President of American Bridge
Subject: What You Need to Know Before Chris Christie “Clears” Himself
Date: Thursday, March 27, 2014

Governor Chris Christie’s taxpayer-funded attorneys today will release a report that supposedly “clears” Christie of any wrongdoing in the scandal known as Bridgegate. This report, which was conducted by a firm with close ties to Christie, involved analysis of documents the Christie administration failed to provide to the state legislative committee investigating the scandal. In other words, Christie’s defense team gave themselves a first look at everything – and now, they are continuing to keep those documents shielded from public view.

The firm that conducted the investigation has close ties to Christie. One of their attorneys even received a lucrative contract from Christie’s office as U.S. Attorney as part of a deferred prosecution agreement. Christie’s use of deferred prosecution agreements has come under fire in the past as a tool he used to reward allies.

What’s more, this self-investigation failed to interview key players whom we know to be involved the scandal – Bridget Anne Kelly, Bill Stepien, and David Wildstein. Without those interviews, any exoneration is suspect.

But the most egregious piece of Christie’s bogus self-exoneration is that it has come at a cost of $1 million of taxpayer money. The Star Ledger has called on Christie to return the taxpayer funds that were used for this farce, and I think most New Jerseyans would agree that their hard earned money could be put to much better use than “clearing” Christie in a scandal created by his own administration.

Read below for the background on what you need to know before Chris Christie “clears” himself of Bridgegate.

A.B. in the News

TPM: “GA GOPers Meet Unemployment Debate Question With Awkward Pause (VIDEO)”

Via TPM:

When a moderator for a recent Georgia Republican primary debate asked candidates by a show of hands whether they would vote to extend benefits for the thousands of American workers who have been stuck with long-term unemployment, the question was met with an awkward pause.

At the Mayor’s Day Senate Forum in Atlanta earlier in the week, none of the six candidates raised their hands in favor of extending benefits, but when the opposite question was asked — who would vote against such a proposal — all six candidates raised their hands. Rep. Paul Broun’s (R-GA) arm shot up the fastest.
The candidates’ reaction could indicate that the extension of unemployment benefits could become an issue in Republican primaries.

Read More on TalkingPointsMemo.com.

Governors

Christie on DREAMers: “They can’t be second class citizens if they’re not citizens”

By threatening to veto a version of the NJ DREAM Act unless the legislature stripped a provision making undocumented students eligible for financial aid — and then mocking and belittling the concerns of a DREAMer who still felt like a “second class citizen,” Chris Christie is trying to have it both ways… and failing. In a transparent attempt to make himself appealing to Latino voters without angering the anti-immigrant GOP base, Christie today created problems for both the primary and general elections in 2016.

At a press conference this afternoon, Christie dismissed the concerns of an undocumented student by repeatedly saying: “They can’t be second class citizens if they’re not citizens.”

Something tells me this isn’t quite the “tone of grace, love, and respect” Reince Priebus was talking about yesterday.