By Adam Wollner
Center for Public Integrity
The political action committee of Koch Industries — the energy and chemicals company led by billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch — gave more money in June to federal political candidates and committees than it ever has in any other month during a non-election year.
KOCHPAC contributed $262,000 to dozens of politicians, political parties and other PACs in June, Federal Election Commission records indicate.
KOCHPAC’s previous record for the most money given in one month during an off-year came in June 2011, when it distributed $227,500 to dozens of candidates and political committees.
Its June 2013 spending also represents the fifth-largest amount of money it’s spent during any month, election year or not, according to a Center for Public Integrity review of federal records.
The most money KOCHPAC has ever donated to federal-level candidates and committees during a single month is $575,000, in September 2006.
KOCHPAC’s monster month in June is a continuation of its fastest start to any election cycle, as it contributed $559,000 from the beginning of the year through the end of May, as the Center for Public Integrity previously reported.
One of the PAC’s top beneficiaries in June was Sen. Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., who will face a primary challenge from Liz Cheney, the daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney.
KOCHPAC contributed $7,500 to Enzi’s campaign prior to Cheney officially announcing her candidacy.
Rep. John Carter, R-Texas, received the legal maximum of $10,000 from KOCHPAC in June, the most of any candidate that month. (Candidates may accept PAC donations of $5,000 each for a primary and general election campaign.) KOCHPAC last month also gave $9,000 to the campaign of Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif.
A Koch Industries official could not immediately be reached for comment.
KOCHPAC is just one of the many ways Charles and David Koch, two of the nation’s foremost conservative political benefactors, have attempted to influence elections and policy.
For instance, the Koch brothers co-founded the Americans for Prosperity, a conservative advocacy organization that was among the biggest spenders in the 2012 election.
But since AFP is a 501(c)(4) nonprofit organization, it is not required to disclose its donors, so it’s unclear exactly how much financial support the Kochs have given the group.
Koch Industries has also spent more than $62 million on efforts to lobby the federal government since 2008, records show.
The Center for Public Integrity is a non-profit, independent investigative news outlet. For more of its stories on this topic go to publicintegrity.org.