David Koch breaks with Republican party on gay marriage, taxes, defense cuts


David Koch, the billionaire industrialist who has donated millions to Republicans, said he backs gay marriage and raising taxes to balance the budget.


Marc Stamas

The billionaire industrialist David Koch, who has contributed millions to Republicans and Mitt Romney, told Politico that he disagrees with the GOP's view on gay marriage and supports considering raising taxes to balance the budget.

Koch, who served as a delegate during the Republican National Convention, said, "I believe in gay marriage." When it was pointed out that Romney and the Republicans oppose gay marriage, Koch said, "Well, I disagree with that," according to Politico.

He also said the US should withdraw from the Middle East and consider defense spending cuts as well as raising taxes in order to balance the budget. He told Politico, "I think it’s essential to be able to achieve spending reductions and maybe it’s going to require some tax increases."

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Koch has drawn attention and criticism from the Democrats for his financing of conservative activist groups and The New York Times called him "one of the most influential men in American politics," together with his brother, Charles.

The group that Koch and his brother began, Americans for Prosperity, has been growing in influence, as it seeks to push the Republican party to the right on spending and regulation, said The Times.

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The Huffington Post noted that AFP is credited with helping create the Tea Party and has spent an estimated $18.2 million on ads in the 2012 campaign so far. The Koch brothers plan to spend as much as $400 million in the upcoming election.

When asked if there was too much money in politics, Koch said, "It’s a free society. People can invest what they want," according to CNN.