NYT Reports 'New Ads Attack the Koch Brothers' Without Mentioning Ties to Harry Reid

NewsBusters reported Tuesday that a nonprofit group with connections to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has started a new ad campaign attacking the Koch brothers.

The New York Times on Wednesday actually wrote about this matter without mentioning Reid's ties:

As patrons of conservative groups, the billionaire Koch brothers have bankrolled plenty of negative ads, but now they are a direct target of one.With a $500,000 ad purchase on Tuesday, an outside political group allied with Democrats said it was beginning an effort to tie the industrial executives to their agenda.

"Billionaire oil tycoons Charles and David Koch and their special interest friends are spending $400 million to buy this year's elections and advance their agenda," a narrator says in the 30-second version of the ad, by Patriot Majority USA, running on CNN and MSNBC. That "greed agenda," the ad contends, includes cutting taxes for the rich, eliminating the minimum wage, cutting education financing and subsidizing oil companies.

The Kochs are "hiding in plain sight," said Craig Varoga, the president of Patriot Majority USA. The group commissioned polls that found that most Americans were not aware of them, Mr. Varoga said.

"Our goal is to increase their name ID and tie it to their actual causes," he said.

However, Mr. Varoga refused to identify the backers of his group's effort. As a tax-exempt "social welfare" organization, Patriot Majority USA is not required to disclose its donors.


The first paragraph said "an outside political group allied with Democrats," but nowhere was it mentioned it's Reid that they're allied with.

Politico reported Tuesday:

A liberal nonprofit group linked to Harry Reid is launching what it says will be a long-term multimillion-dollar advertising campaign targeting the conservative Koch brothers. [...]

“We’re going to take them on,” said Craig Varoga, president of Patriot Majority. His group, which spent more than $10 million boosting Reid during his tough 2010 Senate reelection campaign in Nevada, is the nonprofit arm of Majority PAC, the super PAC assisted by Reid, the Senate Majority Leader, and other Senate Democrats.

I guess the Times didn't think it was important to inform readers that this group has ties to the second-most powerful Democrat in the country. That might have been too much like journalism for the Grey Lady.

Also missing was a possible connection to George Soros. Powerline on Tuesday highlighted a Center for Public Integrity report on Varoga:

Veteran Democratic Party operative Craig Varoga has quietly emerged as a significant player in the universe of outside political groups that during election years pump tens of millions of dollars into ads and get–out-the-vote drives to help members in tough races.

Patriot Majority, a 527 that Varoga set up in 2005, works closely with — and gets about half its funding — from several prominent unions such as the AFL-CIO and the SEIU. “We get money from all the major unions,” Varoga, 53, told the Center, adding that his group also has close political ties with America Votes, a broad coalition of some 400 liberal groups and unions.


The Wall Street Journal reported in May:

Billionaire investor George Soros plans to donate $1 million to super PAC American Bridge 21st Century, a pro-Democratic outside group that is helping Mr. Obama and fellow Democrats.

A spokesman for Mr. Soros says that he will also donate $1 million to America Votes, an organization run by Democrats that helps to coordinate the grassroots activities of progressive groups around the country. (Mr. Soros previously gave $1 million to America Votes last year, bringing to $2 million the total given to the organization for the 2012 campaign season.)

Powerline observed:

So it appears probable that George Soros, a convicted criminal–insider trading–who ranks as America’s 7th richest person, is financing ads that accuse his fellow billionaires of being greedy. For purely altruistic reasons, of course.

Yet none of this seemed at all important to the New York Times as it smeared the Kochs.

As people like to say about this farce of a paper - all the news that fits its agenda.

Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard, Associate Editor of NewsBusters, passed away in March of 2014.