REPORT: Kochs’ LIBRE Initiative is Harmful to Hispanic Community

Bridge Project is continuing the “Month’s Supply of Koch” with the release of the latest report on the Kochs’ LIBRE InitiativeToday Bridge Project is also releasing a new 50-second Spanish language web ad “Los hermanos Koch se oponen al Papa por el cambio climático,” about the Kochs’ attacks on the pope for the Holy Father’s efforts to deter climate change.

The report is a comprehensive look at the Koch-backed LIBRE Initiative that deceptively brands itself as a “grassroots organization” that pushes messages of “liberty, freedom and prosperity,” founded to “empower Hispanics.” The group is actually run by Republican operatives and financed almost entirely by the Koch network.

LIBRE claims to be for comprehensive immigration reform, but their actual agenda seems to be providing political cover for the GOP’s anti-immigrant agenda. Daniel Garza, the group’s executive director, said in 2012 that President Obama’s executive order protecting DREAMers from deportation, or DACA, was “pandering” and “dangerous.” He also questioned whether the move would provide any economic benefit. Garza testified more recently that he’s against the program DAPA, which extends protection to the family of DREAMers, because it’s executive over-reach.

LIBRE’s advocacy against the interests of the community that they supposedly serve doesn’t end with immigration. LIBRE spent millions on ads that attacked supporters of the Affordable Care Act even though Latinos are more likely than any other group to be uninsured. LIBRE also opposes minimum wage increases that would disproportionately help Hispanics.

LIBRE doesn’t limit their attacks to the Latino community, though they also hurt hardworking families by opposing unions and pushing “right to work for less” laws, and by advocating for restricting access to contraception.

The Koch network didn’t put tens of millions of dollars into the LIBRE Initiative for altruistic reasons. Making inroads in the Hispanic community and spreading misinformation is really about fostering an environment that is favorable for the candidates who will implement the Kochs’ profit-driven agenda.

Check out Bridge Project’s new Spanish language wed ad: