Given that this is Election Day in many places around the state and nation, it’s fitting that Raleigh’s News & Observer editorializes this morning against one of the great threats to fair elections in our country — namely, the vast sums of “dark money” being dumped into buying elections at all levels by fat cat special interests like the infamous Koch Brothers.
Athough the latest news stems from developments in California, this is not just a far-off problem for North Carolinians. As the editorial notes:
“The Kochs’ reach extends to North Carolina, where Americans for Prosperity, a group they started, has been orchestrating ads against Democratic U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan, who’s up for re-election in 2014. The campaign is gratuitous and hooked to an obscure issue, the carbon emissions tax, something few people are familiar with. It presents, however, an opportunity to attack a Democrat.
The New York Times reported Monday that the Kochs’ allies don’t go after just big political game. For example, the group is participating heavily in the mayoral and town council races in Coralville, Iowa, and in other small places. Why? Apparently, AFP, as some call it, fights for lower taxes and less government anytime, anywhere. Perhaps AFP wants to seed the race in Coralville figuring that the word might spread to Des Moines.
Some of this arch-conservative money goes to political action committees, which means that contributors’ names have to be disclosed. Other donors give to groups not required to disclose names – groups that can spend millions of dollars on issue advertisements.”
You can read the entire editorial by clicking here.