Victory! Schaufler caves, will return the $3000 from Koch Industries

Kari Chisholm FacebookTwitterWebsite

After it was revealed that Rep. Mike Schaufler had taken $3000 from right-wing supervillains Charles and David Koch, progressives were understandably outraged. After all, the Koch brothers have been key early-stage funders for groups like FreedomWorks, Americans for Prosperity, the Cato Institute, and ongoing supporters of many others.

And now - after substantial pressure was brought to bear - Schaufler caved. He'll be returning the money. The O's Jeff Mapes has the story:

Schaufler announced Wednesday night that he has decided to return the $3,000 given him by Koch Industries. He said that he initially took the contribution because Georgia-Pacific is owned by Koch Industries. "As much as I support the timber industry in this state, I want to be clear that I don't support the Koch brothers' harmful anti-union agenda," said Schaufler in a statement. "And I've decied that the best way to take a stand against their anti-union actions is to send back their money."

Of course, Schaufler's stance proves just how clueless he is - and how out of touch he is with the progressive movement. The Koch brothers have earned their stripes as right-wing supervillains, and that it took public protest for Schaufler to get that is absurd.

Update: Of course, it's worth noting that this is hardly the only questionable donation that he's taken. His campaign has lots of funding from special interests that don't have progressive values. In just the last few weeks, he's taken $4000 from Reynolds Tobacco, $5000 from AOI, $2000 from the Oregon Petroleum Association (whose "premium partners" include Chevron), $3000 from the Soft Drink PAC (which got half of its recent funding directly from Coca-Cola)... and the list goes on.

(An aside: This is why ORESTAR is so important. Continuously updated, searchable campaign finance data is critical for transparency and accountability.)

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    Jeff Reardon won the endorsement of AFSCME, Sierra Club and Mother PAC this morning. Good going, Jeff!

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    Returning the money is kind of like saying "oops" after you've groped someone. Too late. The damage is done. You showed us who you are. I like Mike, but he's clearly showing poor judgement. We deserve better in the legislature.

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    I'm just shocked that Koch Industries was so tight-fisted. I mean, everyone knows that the best super-villains pay generously to recruit their minions. Three grand won't even get you a craven fan, much less a true believer.

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    Full disclosure: My firm has been retained to produce online advertising in this race, not funded by either campaign. I speak only for myself.

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