Koch brothers’ network launches new super PAC

Americans for Prosperity, the sprawling Koch political network, announced Monday the launch of a new super PAC arm as the organization gears up for the final stretch of the 2018 midterms.

The new super PAC was described as “a new tool to build broad policy coalitions in Congress to help advance AFP’s vision,” which “will advocate for candidates who share our commitment to breaking internal and external barriers that prevent people from realizing their full potential.”

The super PAC, called “AFP Action,” will operate independently of the network’s preexisting 501(c)(4) nonprofit and with some key advantages.

Per campaign finance laws, the new group will be able to spend unlimited sums on election activities while being subject to some loose disclosure requirements. The nonprofit arm, however, is subject to even looser disclosure requirements but must dedicate a portion of their spending to “social welfare” activities that cannot explicitly target elections.

The Koch brothers have watched their influence as kingmakers in Republican politics grow since the Supreme Court’s landmark Citizens United decision in 2010, which opened up a new era of loose regulation in campaign finance. Their network had already pledged to spend over $400 million on the 2018 midterm elections before the launch of the new super PAC this week.

The AFP network has also been at the forefront of the battle over Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court, saying over 1.2 million Americans have been contacted through their efforts.

Bill Riggs, spokesperson for AFP Action, said in a statement announcing the new super PAC that “Americans for Prosperity has been a difference-maker supporting policy champions in tight races, and AFP Action is a new tool that will allow us to expand those efforts and make an even larger impact.”