Newly filed tax returns are shedding light on some of the dark money that flooded the 2012 campaign season, and to no surprise, since the 2010 Citizens United ruling, this number has only increased. One particular group, American For Prosperity (the main political arm of the Koch brothers) dumped 122 million dollars into advocacy efforts. A spokesperson for the organization, Levi Russel was quoted saying, "When we see opportunities to engage on our issues, we go all-in, you can expect that to continue."
"But now, thanks to recently released tax returns, we are beginning to learn just who some of the dark-money princes were in 2012 and how much money they spent. As the returns reveal, business interests were very busy during that election, quietly underwriting potent partisan activities that, more often than not, benefited Republicans.
Among the biggest dark-money players was Americans for Prosperity, which dumped $122 million into various election and advocacy efforts. Founded and largely financed by the Koch brothers, the organization also drew undisclosed support from major corporations, according to tax returns and voluntary disclosures. As AFP hammered Obama with attack ads and sponsored an unprecedented get out the vote effort, the group quietly received donations from the tobacco products giant Reynolds American, from a business league of cable companies, and from the American Petroleum Institute, a trade group representing firms in the oil industry, including ExxonMobil, Chevron and the U.S.-subsidiary of TransCanada. And no wonder: one of the legislative priorities championed by Americans for Prosperity during the election, the REINS Act, would require Congress to approve every major regulation put forward by a Federal agency, from banking rules to clean air and beyond—a radical proposal that would be a windfall for AFP’s corporate backers."