From a luxury retreat on the edge of the Rocky Mountains, some of the nation’s most powerful and influential Republican donors are rebelling against Donald Trump.
Billionaire industrialist Charles Koch, host of the exclusive weekend retreat, did not mention Trump by name as warned that political leaders are giving “frightening” answers to America’s challenges. One of his chief lieutenants was more direct as he made clear that Koch’s expansive political network would not use its tremendous resources to help Trump win this fall.
Koch described the 2016 “political situation” this way: “We don’t really, in some cases, don’t really have good options.”
The comments came Saturday, the first of a three-day gathering for donors who promise to give at least $100,000 each year to the various groups backed by the Koch brothers’ Freedom Partners — a network of education, policy and political entities that aim to promote a smaller, less intrusive government.
The ambitious Koch network has invested hundreds of millions of dollars to influence politics and public policy over the last decade, but don’t plan to spend anything to help Trump, even if some of the 400 or so deep-pocketed donors gathered in Colorado Springs this weekend think it should.
The weekend’s agenda for the estimated 400 donors gathered in Colorado Springs featured a series of policy discussions and appearances from at least three governors, four senators and four members of the House of Representatives, including House Speaker Paul Ryan.
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