Reid: Billionaires? We don't have no stinking billionaires, or something

Aaaaaaaaahem. Today’s two-minute hate on Emmanuel Goldstein, er, the Koch brothers from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid offers up this fact-check bait on the poverty of the Democratic Party. We need to amend the First Amendment, Reid argues, to address the Billionaire-Balance of Power. Call this Cowboy B-BOP instead of cowboy poetry, if you will:


Well, every cowboy sings a sad, sad song, but not usually one as laughably false as this. (Okay, El Paso might qualify.) Let’s not forget that Reid essentially rented out the Senate for an evening to billionaire activist Tom Steyer to promote action on global warming that Democrats weren’t taking anyway. They’ve lined up deep pockets in Hollywood for decades, plus tons of money from the unions, which occupy the top slots for outside-money in election cycle after election cycle. Crying poverty now on the Senate floor is Reid’s version of Hillary Clinton’s claim to have been “dead broke” in 2001.

Coincidentally, Matt Bai wrote a pre-emptive takedown of this very argument earlier today:

So you’re a liberal member of the 1 percent, and you’ve decided to wrest control of the Democratic agenda from change-averse insiders. You want to free the capital from the grip of powerful interest groups. You want to inspire a new set of policies to help America meet the challenges of a fast-transforming economy. Where do you turn for leadership and innovation?

To the teachers union, of course!

At least that’s how it seems to have played out at the Democracy Alliance, the group of superrich Democrats who have funneled more than half a billion dollars into liberal groups over the past decade. Earlier this month, the alliance announced that John Stocks, executive director of the National Education Association, would become the chairman of its board. …

The Silicon Valley and Wall Street contributors who were most focused on modernization started to drift away, exhausted by the endless conference calls and the knee-jerk resistance to any rethinking of the liberal agenda. The remaining “partners,” as the alliance calls them, were overwhelmingly aging boomers who clung to 1960s orthodoxies.

Eventually, the alliance became, essentially, a convener and funder of the party establishment. It welcomed several big unions to the table and took up side collections for candidates. And now it’s formalized that role by electing Stocks as its chairman, replacing Rob McKay, heir to the Taco Bell fortune.


Be sure to read it all, as Bai criticizes both the hypocrisy of currying favor with One Percenters in the midst of Kochsteria, but also the betrayal of innovation by the decision to suck up to the unions rather than outside-the-box thinkers. Reid is making his bid for the most hypocritical and dishonest demagogue in Washington history, and that’s really an ambitious bid indeed.

Update: Harry Reid, your PAC is on the red emergency line:

In April, billionaire liberal mega-donor Tom Steyer dumped $5 million into Harry Reid’s Senate Majority PAC. The PAC reported receipts of $5.7 million from April 17 to April 30 — almost all of which came from the liberal mega-donor. This donation was twice as large as the one given to the PAC by fellow billionaire Michael Bloomberg earlier this year.

Other notable billionaires who back Democrats include: George Soros, Warren Buffet, Stephen Spielberg, Haim Saban, etc.

“Your winnings, sir!”

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