Top Democrat candidates Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Bernie Sanders (I-VT) demonstrated very different responses after their crowds reacted to the late-billionaire, political mega-donor, and philanthropist David Koch, who passed away last week.
Sanders held a Q&A at the Minnesota State Fair Saturday and condemned the audience after they applauded Koch’s passing.
“Yesterday, oligarch David Koch passed away,” an attendee said, triggering applause.
“And we’re going to be dealing with his pollution and the radicalization of his politics. He’s made a killing off of the misery of other people, and I want to talk about retroactive justice,” he continued.
“How would you follow up for the victims of folks who are coming down in the future generations?” he asked.
Sanders, however, did not ignore the audience’s reaction and made it clear that he did not agree with it.
“I don’t applaud, you know, the death of somebody. We needn’t do that,” he told his supporters.
I think what we can say is that the Koch brothers and other billionaires, because of this disastrous Citizens United Supreme Court decision, have been able to spend hundreds and hundreds of millions of dollars to represent the wealthy and the powerful, and the fossil fuel industry, which is where the Koch brothers made a lot of their money.
Warren took a different approach. She spoke to a crowd of supporters in Seattle, Washington, Sunday and blasted the Kochs during her stump speech, particularly for their response to climate change-related matters over the years:
And then along come big oil, big polluters, the Koch brothers. They come in, and they say you know this could be a problem. If our government, our federal government gets really serious about climate change, they’re going to bite into our own profits. If they change the regulations, that’s going to disrupt how we do business. So they have an investment decision to make.
Warren’s words triggered boos from the audience, but she – unlike Sanders – let the boos roll without any form of condemnation:
Charles Koch announced his brother’s death in a statement last week.
“It is with a heavy heart that I announce the passing of my brother David,” he said in a statement.
“Anyone who worked with David surely experienced his giant personality and passion for life,” he continued. “We can all be grateful that it did, because he was able to touch so many more lives as a result.”
Many leftist blue checkmarks openly celebrated the news on social media.
“Bye bitch I’m glad you died,” Daily Beast contributor Erin Gloria Ryan wrote in part:
“More people will die bc of the Koch’s greed than died in WW2 so absolutely do not be respectful,” comedian and writer Zack Bornstein wrote in a tweet, which has since been deleted.
The world is literally on fire.
If you don't take a moment to dance on the grave of David Koch now you may never get the chance to.
— Ijeoma Oluo (@IjeomaOluo) August 23, 2019
I’d rather wipe my ass with a maple leaf than use one of Koch’s products. https://t.co/neLGsnoUQ3
— Bette Midler (@BetteMidler) August 23, 2019
David Koch see you in Hell bitch
— luke • (@lukeoneil47) August 23, 2019
Calling David Koch a philanthropist is like calling Hannibal Lecter a chef. https://t.co/TvjRUrJouL
— Adam Best (@adamcbest) August 23, 2019