David Koch, the billionaire businessman and philanthropist, says he was the target of 100 credible death threats last year alone because of his opposition to unions in the United States.
The influential conservative, who founded and funds the tea party-friendly group Americans for Prosperity, told The Palm Beach Post that he’s no “bully.”
“They make me sound like a bully,” Koch told the Post, complaining of press coverage. “Do I look like a bully?”
The Post detailed a charity dinner that Koch and his wife, Julia, hosted recently at his Palm Beach home for the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.
In 1990s, Koch discovered that he had prostate cancer. The Anderson Center successfully treated and cured him.
Koch said he is remaining active in political battles despite the criticism and threats he has received.
He told the Post that Americans for Prosperity is helping Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, who faces a recall election after taking on public employee unions.
“We’re helping him, as we should. We’ve gotten pretty good at this over the years,” he said. “We’ve spent a lot of money in Wisconsin. We’re going to spend more.”
Americans for Prosperity reportedly is spending about $700,000 on television ads supporting Walker and his reformist union policies.
But the Post notes that Koch and his brother Charles, who share the No. 4 rank in the Forbes billionaire list, have broader charitable interests than just politics. David “holds board seats with 23 nonprofit groups and has pledged gifts totaling more than $750 million for cancer research, the arts and cultural institutions, according to his foundation,” the Post reported.
Good for him.