Rand Paul wants to arrest the Koch brothers?
In a recent interview posted by ThinkProgress, Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) briefly departed from his defense of corporate polluters (who heavily financed his 2010 election campaign) and claimed, "If you dump benzene in the stream, I want you to go to jail."
ThinkProgress was quick to point out the irony that one of Paul's many dirty campaign contributors, Koch Industries, was caught by the Department of Justice in 2000 after illegally releasing at least 91 metric tons of uncontrolled benzene into its liquid waste stream, and later plead guilty to falsifying documents in an effort to cover up the incident. For more, see the Justice Department's 2001 press release: "Koch Pleads Guilty to Covering Up Environmental Violations at Texas Oil Refinery." Greenpeace also has more information about Koch Industries' environmental record and how the company has avoided responsibility for preventing chemical disasters at its facilities.
Federal Election Commission data shows that Charles Koch and wife Elizabeth, David Koch and wife Julia, and Chase Koch (Charles Koch's son and Koch executive) and wife Anna each contributed the maximum $2,400 to Rand Paul's 2010 campaign for a total donation of $14,400...plus another $5,000 from Koch Industries. Koch Industries as a company spent over $7 million to influence the 2010 election cycle (see page 18 of Koch Industries: Still Fueling Climate Denial).
Forbes' newly updated "Richest Americans" list shows that Charles and David Koch have jumped up the rich list to tie as the fourth richest American, each worth an estimated $25 billion. Demonstrating the continuing consolidation of wealth at the top, Rachel Maddow reports that as Charles and David Koch increased their net wealth by $16 billion, Koch Industries cut 13,000 jobs.
For ongoing research about the dirty deeds of the billionaire Koch brothers, check out Greenpeace's hub page on Koch Industries and climate denial.