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Climate Change Likely to Shape Koch Brothers' Future Election Plans

by Brandon Fallon, published

Charles and David Koch, heads of Koch Industries and the founders of the conservative activist organization, Americans for Prosperity (AFP), are postponing their semi-annual meeting to April. The reason for the delay is due to the need to analyze election data on a state-by-state level.

Charles Koch noted in an email posted on National Review Online to close friends and fellow GOP donors:

"We are working hard to understand the election results, and based on that analysis, to re-examine our vision and the strategies and capabilities required for success. Although some of the needed changes are already evident, it will be several months before the state data necessary to complete this analysis is available."

A topic that has been brought up during these meetings before, and may be discussed again in April, is the environment and renewable energy. The billionaire brothers have a long history of being staunch opponents of climate science and its findings on climate change.

The source of the Koch family's wealth comes from their multinational oil and chemical companies, placing their interests in direct conflict with supporters of renewable energy and people who believe in climate change.

Since their meetings are generally ways to strategize, organize, and influence legislation through the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), it will not be surprising to see the Koch Brothers begin funding next year’s GOP candidates.

Virginia will have its gubernatorial election in 2013. Climate change and clean energy will no doubt be serious topics of debate during the campaign season.

Two likely names to be on the general election ballot are Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli (R) and former DNC chairman, Terry McAuliffe. Cuccinelli is a tea party favorite who rejects climate change. McAuliffe, who founded an electric and hybrid automotive company, supports a stronger push for clean energy jobs in the state.

The Koch brothers have used their wealth to further conservative causes nationwide and as they examine the 2012 election results for each state, it is likely they will take a hard look at Virginia and what the state means to their own interests.

Charles and David continue to have a significant amount of influence in shaping GOP policy across the country and look to further their impact on elections across the country in 2013 and beyond.

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