Opensecrets.org has released its list of the top all-time political donors of the 25 past years. If you’ve followed liberal politicians on Twitter, or if you’ve received emails from the Democratic Party, you might imagine the Koch brothers be at the top of the list, wringing their hands in evil anticipation, maybe cackling maniacally.
The Koch bros made over $18 billion last year, but middle-class families have watched their incomes stagnate for decades. #RaiseTheWage
— Senator Harry Reid (@SenatorReid) February 18, 2014
Since the Democrats continue to bring up the Koch Brothers and their money, let’s examine just who, exactly, has poured more money into the political pot over the past 25 years.
1. ActBlue – A PAC launch in 2004. If the name wasn’t clear enough, it bills itself as the “clearinghouse for Democratic action.” Donations: $97,192,340. Politics: Solidly Democrat.
2. American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees – A Union representing 1.6 million workers across the country in fields such as nursing, sanitation and correction. Donations: $60,667,379. Politics: Strongly Democrat.
3. AT&T – American telecommunications corporation with the country’s largest 4G network. Donations: $56,449,317. Politics: On the Fence.
4. National Education Association – The nation’s oldest and largest teacher’s union. Donations: $53,594,488. Politics: Leans Democrat.
5. National Association of Realtors: A trade association with 1.2 million members representing the nation’s real estate industry. Donations: $51,207,902. Politics: On the Fence.
6. Goldman Sachs: A Wall Street investment bank saved by the government by receiving a taxpayer bailout in 2008-2009. Donations: $44,847,951. Politics: On the Fence.
7. International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers: AFL-CIO-affiliated labor union representing 750,000 electrical workers nationwide. Donations: $44,478,789. Politics: Solidly Democrat.
8. United Auto Workers: One of the most politically active of all unions. Donations: $41,667,858. Politics: Strongly Democrat.
9. Carpenters and Jointers Union: Represents half a million carpenters and tradesmen nationwide. Donations: $39,260,371. Politics: Strongly Democrat.
10. Service Employees International Union: The largest and fastest-growing union within the AFL-CIO, with 1.5 million members. Donations: $38,395,690. Politics: Strongly Democrat.
My, that’s a lot of blue. Not a single Republican group in the top ten, in fact. Which is ironic, considering how much the Democratic Party vilifies wealth and the wealthy.
Democrats will surely express their shock and disbelief that the Koch brothers didn’t use their super-secret evil conservative powers to make it to the top. In fact, the dreaded duo weren’t even close – coming in at number 59. The $18,083,948 they’ve contributed over 25 years looks like chump change next to the fundraising vehicles that fill the coffers of Democratic politicians.
So, anytime Democrats claim that Republicans are “The Party of the Rich,” just remember which side of the aisle cozies up to big money.