wisconsin capitol
Press Release
February 8, 2012

Wisconsin Outrage: Are Koch Brothers Getting a Tax Break for TV Ad Touting Gov. Walker’s Failed Policies?

Wealthy and Corporations Got Over $2.3 Billion in Tax Giveaways at Our Expense. Now a Tax Break for TV Ads Touting Policies Benefitting Them?

MADISON, Wis. — A recently launched statewide television ad campaign, touting the failed policies of Republican Gov. Scott Walker that have resulted in six straight months of job losses, could be providing Kansas billionaire brothers David and Charles Koch and others with a tax break.

One Wisconsin Now Deputy Director Mike Browne commented, “The Koch brothers and their ilk are the kind of people that could reap the rewards of the $2.3 billion in tax cuts over ten years Gov. Walker has already signed into law. It’s an outrage that they could also be getting tax breaks for the ads they’re running in support of their trickle-down economic policies.”

An organization behind the ads, Americans for Prosperity Foundation, is classified as a 501(c)(3) organization under the federal tax code. That tax status means donors contributing to the group can receive a tax deduction for their “charity”. The Kansas billionaire Koch brothers founded Americans for Prosperity Foundation, and it has been reported that they, along with a cadre of corporations and wealthy elite, help fund its continuing operations.

The latest Americans for Prosperity Foundation funded ad flight has been reported to total at least $700,000. Along with earlier ads run by the tax-exempt organization, total spending by 501(c)(3) organizations to promote the Walker agenda with TV ads likely tops $2 million.

Browne concluded, “The people of Wisconsin are already paying for Gov. Walker’s $2.3 billion in tax giveaways to the Koch brothers and others with draconian cuts to education and health care and tax increases on seniors and working families. But to have to possibly subsidize these TV ads as billionaires and their front groups manipulate the tax code is beyond reprehensible.”

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One Wisconsin Now is a statewide communications network specializing in effective earned media and online organizing to advance progressive leadership and values.

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