Koch Network Endorses 8 GOP House Members in Competitive Races

Conservative megadonors have pivoted their political strategy, raised Trump’s ire

Rep. Erik Paulsen, R-Minn., is one of the House members who Americans for Prosperity announced it would support. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The political arm of the Koch conservative brothers’ network announced the House candidates it would support as it shifts its political strategy.

Americans for Prosperity named eight members of Congress in competitive races as its “policy champions.”

“The candidates we are supporting this fall have each been strong, principled leaders committed to removing barriers to opportunity in the federal government that are preventing people from realizing their full potential,” AFP President Tim Phillips said in a statement.

The announcement comes as the Koch network, headed by brothers David and Charles Koch, has found itself at odds with the Republican Party at times during Donald Trump’s presidency.

Last month, AFP announced it would not support Rep. Kevin Cramer in his challenge to Democratic incumbent Sen. Heidi Heitkamp in North Dakota because of his views on trade and immigration.

That elicited a response from Trump, who called then the “globalist Koch Brothers” and their network’s influence “highly overrated.”

At the same time, while AFP did not endorse Heitkamp, it did release ads in June praising her for sponsoring legislation that rolled back financial regulations under Dodd-Frank.

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