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Pence fosters deep ties to deep pockets

The boosting of Gov. Mike Pence for president continues.

Politico, the online political news site, offered a major story Thursday about Pence's close ties with the omnipresent but private Koch brothers, the oil and gas billionaires who fund a lot of conservative advocacy groups.

One of those groups, Americans for Prosperity, invited Pence to a panel discussion Friday.

Politico offered several observations about Pence and the Kochs:

• Pence's ex-staffers have gone to work for the Kochs' corporate or political operations.

• “An alignment between the Kochs and Pence could be of great benefit to both headed into 2016,” Politico said. “It dovetails with a concerted move by the Kochs' allies to mold the brothers' political vision into a strategy intended to win elections and policy debates, rather than merely wage quixotic campaigns at the margins of wonky debates.”

• Pence works on issues that resonate with Koch groups. They liked the way he opposed several so-called big-government efforts by his own party, including No Child Left Behind.

• Pence headlined a fundraiser for the New York state Republican Party. David Koch sponsored it. And then gave the Pence campaign $200,000.

• He “endeared himself even more to Koch allies by successfully pushing for aggressive tax cuts even after initial objections from fellow Republicans in the state Legislature.”