Doug Martin reports that Governor Mike Pence is attracting major campaign contributions from the fabulously wealthy circle of friends allied with the Koch Brothers.


Martin writes:


On June 25, just one day after the governor wrote a letter to president Obama saying Indiana would not comply with proposed Environmental Protection Agency rules against greenhouse omissions, Mike Pence’s campaign received a $10,000 gift from Marvin Gilliam of Bristol, Virginia.


Gilliam is the former VP of what was once one of the largest coal producers in America, Cumberland Resources, which was purchased by Massey Energy in 2010.


In 2013, Gilliam and Koch Industries, along with other wealthy donors, financed the gubernatorial campaign of Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli II, a longtime Republican and anti-LGBT climate denier who “used his position to launch an inquisition against a former University of Virginia climate scientist.”


By funding Pence, the Koch Ring knows they will have a steady far-right ally, who will join them in denying climate change, in promoting the privatization of public education, and in their other radical schemes.


Pence will face a strong challenge from State Superintendent of Education Glenda Ritz. In 2012, she beat rightwing hero Tony Bennett and won more votes than Pence.


The question for Indiana is whether its people are prepared to fight for their state or to hand it over to the corporate elites.


By the way, if you have not read Doug Martin’s Hoosier School Heist, you should. It is a well-documented report on the corporate takeover of Hoosier public schools by profiteers.