Official: Kochs Didn’t Give Money Directly In California Dark Money Case

AP

The former chair of California’s campaign finance watchdog told a local news program this weekend that the large 2012 dark money donation that led last month to a major fine against two groups did not involve any money directly from the billionaire Koch brothers. 

California’s Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) in October announced a “record settlement” against two Arizona dark money groups, the Center to Protect Patient Rights and Americans for Responsible Leadership, that were behind a $11 million donation to 2012 ballot initiative efforts in the Golden State. 

In an interview with KNBC that aired on Nov. 2, the anchor asked Ann Ravel, the recently departed chair of the FPPC, about press accounts of the individuals behind the donations, whose identities have been pieced together using a partially redacted document released by the FPPC. 

“You believe the Koch brothers, Eli Broad, billionaire in Los Angeles, those were some of the names who were responsible for the money?” the anchor asked Ravel.

“Well it was not the Koch brothers,” Ravel replied. “It was Eli Broad, and there were some others. The Fischers, and other major donors. Some of whom are Democratic, some of whom are on the Republican side. But those were people that were identified by looking at that document. The Koch brothers have never been implicated themselves as having been direct donors.”

In a press release announcing the settlement with the Center to Protect Patient Rights and Americans for Responsible Leadership, the FPPC said that both groups operated as part of the “Koch Brothers’ Network’ of dark money political nonprofit corporations.” 

(h/t Free Beacon

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Eric Lach is a reporter for TPM. From 2010 to 2011, he was a news writer in charge of the website?s front page. He has previously written for The Daily, NewYorker.com, GlobalPost and other publications. He can be reached at ericl@talkingpointsmemo.com

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