Billionaire industrialist — not to mention major financial supporter of Republican causes — David Koch has been named as one of Mitt Romney’s delegates to the convention later this month in Tampa.
Koch, 72, is one of 95 delegates chosen to represent New York. The Wichita, Kansas, native and his wife, Julia, have a Park Avenue residence in Manhattan and a beach retreat in Southampton, where the couple recently hosted Romney for a fundraiser.
Koch is “deeply honored and humbled” to have been chosen as a delegate, he said in a statement posted today to a Koch Industries Web site.
“As Americans, we all have a role to play in the democratic process,” the statement says.“From learning about the issues to participating in campaigns and voting, this is an opportunity – and a right – to help chart the course for our nation.”
But will he actually head to Tampa? Yes, spokesman Robert Tappan confirmed.
Charles Koch, 76 and chairman and chief executive officer of Koch Industries, is not planning to attend. David Koch is executive vice president of the closely held holding company. David Koch is the eighth richest person in the world, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, and Charles Koch is the seventh richest — each worth an estimated $35.8 billion.
Even before David Koch travels to the Republican National Convention, his presence will be felt throughout the election cycle: Americans for Prosperity, a nonprofit political issues group the brothers launched in 2003, plans to spend at least $100 million before Election Day. David Koch is chairman of the companion Americans for Prosperity Foundation.
While AFP wants to spend most of its money on ground troops to get out the vote, this week it began what could amount to a $25 million summertime television ad campaign that specifically urges people to deny President Barack Obama a second term.
AFP activists also plan to be in Tampa during the convention.