White House Press Briefing with Ari Fleischer May 3, 2001
    
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Published on Thursday, May 3, 2001
 
Ari the Evader by Russell Mokhiber...
 
Ari & I
White House Press Briefing with Ari Fleischer
 
 
May 3, 2001, 12:30 p.m.
 
 
by Russell Mokhiber
 
     
 

Mokhiber: Ari, yesterday, I asked you about Koch Industries, which last month pled guilty to a felony environmental crime. The question was -- the campaign took money from the company and from the employees, and you said -- it couldn't have taken money from the company, because it's illegal to take money from the company. Which is true, but I went and checked, and in fact, Koch Industries Political Action Committee (PAC) gave $5,000 to the campaign. And the political action committee is controlled by the company. Back to the original question --

Ari Fleischer: That's not accurate.

Mokhiber: It is accurate.

Ari Fleischer: The political action committee is comprised of voluntary contributions from employees.

Mokhiber: But the company decides how to spend it.

Ari Fleischer: The political action committee decides how to spend it.

Mokhiber: But the company controls the political action committee.

Ari Fleischer: It's not corporate -- the political action committee is a voluntary committee - Is there a question?

Mokhiber: Yes, there is a question -- which I think you dodged yesterday -- given that this money came from what is now a convicted corporate felon, does the President have a policy on accepting money from convicted felons, and should he give it back at least to the PAC, which is controlled by the company?

Ari Fleischer: Again, you are making a tie between individuals and corporations. That's not the case. Corporations cannot give campaign contributions and the campaign did not receive corporate contributions.

Mokhiber:: Excuse me, could I follow up, Ari?

 

 
 

-Thanks to Russell Mokhiber

White House reporter Russell Mokhiber is the editor of the Washington, D.C.-based Corporate Crime Reporter - www.corporatecrimereporter.com. He co-authors the weekly Focus on the Corporation column with Robert Weissman which Common Dreams publishes. He can be reached at: russell@nationalpress.com

 

 
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