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Mr. MORAN. Mr. President, Koch Industries is a company which is headquartered in Wichita, KS, and is an American job creator that employs 2,600 citizens of my State. The corporation, a longstanding U.S. manufacturing company, employs around 50,000 people with good-paying jobs across the country, including around 15,000 employees who are represented by unions.
Depending on the year, Koch Industries is either the first or second largest privately held company in America, with about $100 billion in revenues. I am pleased by its presence in our State, where the company and its owners are respected corporate citizens.
The Koch family, the owners of Koch Industries, has made a statewide impact through foundations and charitable work which has given millions of dollars to help education of the poor, at-risk youth, the arts, and environmental causes.
The investments they make primarily go to Kansas and to Kansas citizens. I am grateful this company has chosen to invest in our State's economy and its people. I am pleased they are a corporate citizen of Kansas.
During the debate this week of the DISCLOSE Act, Koch Industries and its owners were mentioned numerous times. While I could come to the floor and complain about the lack of balance, if we are having a debate about the desirability of disclosing contributions to political causes, certainly the debate I heard on the Senate floor, the rhetoric, was about those who contribute to what are described as conservative causes, free-market causes. I could come to the floor and complain about the lack of balance in that discussion. But in my view, if we are going to have a discussion about the DISCLOSE Act, what we ought to all stand for is the opportunity for free speech, the opportunity for those of a variety of political points of view to be able to express those views in the political process.
Those positions, the ability to do that--perhaps not the positions, but the ability to promote your position ought to be something defended by all. We need more participation in American democracy, not less. In my view, the discussion we had this week was a distraction from the real issues our country faces, mostly related to the economy and job creation. So rather than spending our time on the Senate floor discussing the DISCLOSE Act, in my view we should be on the Senate floor creating policies that put in place those that Koch Industries has shown in my State to create jobs rather than arguing about political contributions of those job creators.
I come to the floor today to suggest that, one, Koch Industries is a great corporate citizen of the State of Kansas, contributing in many ways to the economy and to the well-being of our citizens; to suggest that if we are going to have a debate about the DISCLOSE Act there be some balance, and that those who believe in free speech and participation in democracy ought to always rise to the occasion to defend those who engage in the political process; and finally to suggest that rather than having a debate about the DISCLOSE Act, what we should be doing is finding ways to replicate what the Founders and shareholders of Koch Industries have done in Kansas, the United States, and around the globe: create jobs for Americans in our country's economy.
We are off track here. It is time for us to get back on track and to focus on what matters, a growing economy, so we can help families across America put food on their family's table, save for their kids' education, save for their own retirement, and promote a free-
market enterprise system that does just that.
I yield the floor, and I suggest the absence of a quorum.
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