Charles Koch Apparently Has a Nickname for Barack Obama [Updated]


The billionaire and right-wing bankroller was recorded at a private event calling the president “Saddam Hussein” — not exactly a term of endearment, but one that apparently was well-received by his audience. Mother Jones posted a complete tape of a strategy and finance seminar Koch and his brother David held recently for an estimated crowd of 300. The tape is something of a get, at least as Mother Jones tells it.

Audio technicians even set up outward-pointing speakers around the perimeter of the outdoor dining pavilion, according to sources, emitting static to frustrate would-be eavesdroppers.

Instead of anonymity, top donors can now expect to attract the notoriety that accompanies nearly every revelation involving the secretive Koch brothers: Mother Jones also printed the names of 32 people who donated more than $1 million to the brothers’ causes, which include discrediting climate science. The list includes the Templeton family (who’ve donated big bucks to conservative causes before and who back the Templeton Foundation, which aims to marry religion and science), Charles Schwab (as in the brokerage), and a score of other, less familiar names, many of who have a long history of donating to Republican causes and candidates. Koch, it seems, wants them to go forth and multiply.

Does he realize that metaphor makes him sound like the bad guy–mastermind from a science fiction movie, which only plays into how the media writes about him?

Update: Politico’s Ben Smith reports that maybe Mother Jones didn’t do such a great job transcribing the tapes on the Saddam Hussein bit. He gave it another listen.

Luckily, the magazine posted the audio for its readers, so as they say over at Fox: We report, you decide.

Exclusive Audio: Inside the Koch Brothers’ Secret Seminar [Mother Jones]
Exclusive: The Koch Brothers’ Million-Dollar Donor Club [Mother Jones]