Employees of one Koch Industries subsidiary found a copy of Charles Koch’s defense of his “vision” for America in their inboxes Thursday morning, along with a message encouraging them to share the op-ed with anyone who “might benefit from hearing the truth” about the billionaire Koch brothers.
TPM obtained an email sent on behalf of Dave Robertson, Koch Industries’ president and chief operating officer, addressed to all employees of Invista, a chemical company owned by the corporation, that contained the full text of Koch’s op-ed and a link to the piece in the Wall Street Journal.
“Following is an op-ed by Charles Koch that is published in today’s Wall Street Journal,” the email read. “In it, Charles emphasizes the importance of a free society and responds to many of the outrageous attacks that have been made by some politicians and their media allies.”
“Please feel free to share this with whomever you think might benefit from hearing the truth about our company, our culture and the Koch family,” the email continued.
Robertson’s email to employees may indicate some concern over the parent company’s image at a time when its owners face scrutiny for pouring large sums of money into political outside spending groups. Koch’s op-ed decried the “almost daily” character attacks lobbed at him, hinting at Democrats like Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), who called Koch “un-American” on the Senate floor.
“Rather than try to understand my vision for a free society or accurately report the facts about Koch Industries, our critics would have you believe we’re “un-American” and trying to “rig the system,” that we’re against “environmental protection” or eager to “end workplace safety standards,” Koch wrote in the op-ed.
Reid’s original attack was spurred by an anti-Obamacare ad bankrolled by Koch-funded Americans for Prosperity that stretched the facts. Since then, the Senate majority leader has gone on a weeks-long public crusade against the Koch brothers, who he says are “trying to buy America.”
A spokesperson for Koch Industries did not respond to a request for comment.
View the email below:
Catherine Thompson is a senior editor for Talking Points Memo in New York City. She came to the site in 2013 and reported on national affairs. Previously, she worked as a research assistant to investigative reporter Wayne Barrett. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.