Chutzpah Watch — Koch Edition

CHUTZPAH WATCH — KOCH EDITION…. There’s been a fair amount of attention lately focused on David and Charles Koch, right-wing billionaires going to great lengths, mainly through their “Americans for Prosperity” outfit, to bolster Republicans in 2010.

With that in mind, this report from Igor Volsky is pretty striking.

Today, the Department of Health and Human Services announced the “first round of applicants accepted into the Early Retiree Reinsurance Program,” a $5 billion program established by the new health care law to help employers and states “maintain coverage for early retirees age 55 and older who are not yet eligible for Medicare.” According to the agency, “nearly 2,000 employers, representing large and small businesses, State and local governments, educational institutions, non-profits, and unions” applied and have been accepted into the program and “will begin to receive reimbursements for employee claims this fall.”

Ironically, one of those employers is the oil, chemicals, and manufacturing conglomerate Koch Industries, which as Lee Fang has reported, has also spent millions of dollars opposing reform.

Indeed, a year ago this month, Americans for Prosperity organized crazed rallies in opposition to health care reform, in one instance going so far as to compare the Democratic plan to the Nazi Holocaust.

This is the same group that invested $1.7 million in attack ads, blatantly lying to the American public about the reform proposal, falsely telling the country that Democrats were publishing a socialized, Canadian-style system.

And now the Koch Brothers want in on receiving grants through the same law they fought like crazy to kill.

The right’s capacity for shamelessness continues to impress.

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