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For a long time their email seemed to favor the GOP. But yesterday they unloaded on the Koch brothers. calls itself A Project of the Annenberg Public Policy Center.
I’ve been on their email list a long time.  I think I remember being irritated by the way they seemed to strive for false equivalency in how hard they critiqued what Democrats and Republicans said in election campaigns, going back as far as 2004.  In fact, that’s been my chronic peeve with them – they seem to give as much attention and ink to minor exaggerations by Democrats as they do to flaming lies by Republicans.  But on the nagging fear that some of that impression was due to my own take on politics, I’ve kept reading their emails.

Well, yesterday they took off the gloves and came out swinging.  They ran an article titled “Obamacare for the Mortgatge Industry?” that you should read.
It starts out

A slate of new ads from the 60 Plus Association evoke a well-worn conservative punching bag — “Obamacare” — to attack seven senators for supporting a lesser-known plan to overhaul the housing finance market. But the group stretches the analogy to absurd lengths to make the case that a Senate proposal amounts to a “takeover of the mortgage industry.” [Emphasis added]
The $1.6 million TV and radio ad campaign from the 60 Plus Association, a self-styled conservative alternative to the AARP that has received millions in funding from organizations connected to the Koch brothers, targets Democrats and Republicans alike who supported a Senate bill that would wind down mortgage finance giants Fannie and Freddie. The targeted senators: Democrats Joe Manchin, Mark Warner and Kay Hagan, and Republicans Mike Crapo, Dean Heller, Jerry Moran and Mark Kirk.[Emphasis added]
Maybe the fact that the ad campaign takes on as many Republicans as Democrats (more, actually) finally made FactCheck feel free to use terms like “stretches the analogy to absurd lengths,” and “overplay an emotional appeal.”  But what made my day was seeing the Koch brothers singled out for being behind the campaign.  The conservative folks I work with hadn’t heard of the Koch brothers until I mentioned them a few months ago, even though they were very familiar with George Soros.  Now the Kochs are getting bad press from an organization that tries hard to be factual and that can’t reasonably be accused of a slant against them.  And unlike Sheldon Adelson, the Koch brothers have been camera shy.  

From what I gather from the whole article, it sounds as if the campaign is an attempt to reap a windfall for speculators who bought up Fannie Mae and Freddie Mack stock after they tanked.  They paid pennies on the dollar for them, and now they seem to want to convince Congress to pay them back at a rate of dimes or quarters for those pennies.  FactCheck’s story doesn’t follow the money to see who would profit from such an outcome, but I’ll bet the Koch brothers were among those speculators.


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