Progress Missouri today released a new report exposing direct ties between the Show‐Me Institute (SMI)and the Koch Brothers-funded State Policy Network (SPN), a national network of like‐minded 'think tanks' that promotes disinformation and the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) agendas in state Capitols. The Show‐Me Institute has also received significant funding from the Donors Capital Fund, which is also connected to the notorious Koch Brothers, and other out‐of‐state right‐wing organizations such as the Roe Foundation and the Cato Institute.
“The Show-Me Institute is far more than one of Rex Sinquefield’s pet projects,” said Sean Soendker Nicholson, Executive Director of Progress Missouri. “The Show-Me Institute is part of a national network of right-wing belief tanks, a franchise in the Koch Brothers-funded State Policy Network and supported by the Koch-connected Donors Capital Fund. With its national backers in mind, it’s not surprising to see the organization work to keep Missourians trapped in poverty wages, attack on Missouri’s middle class, oppose affordable health insurance options for Missouri’s working families, and work to make Missouri’s teachers and school administrators ‘at will’ employees.”
The new report also outlines the multiple streams of income and direct conflicts of interest for the Show-Me Institute’s “Chief Economist,” Joseph Haslag, who also serves as a campaign consultant and University of Missouri Ken Lay Chair of Economics. Beyond his public university salary, Haslag has also received at least $200,000 in salary from SMI in recent years and more than $75,000 in campaign consulting fees from ideological campaign committees. Meanwhile, Haslag advocates against defined retirement plans and against minimum wage increases for working Missourians.
Progress Missouri’s new report is online at www.ProgressMissouri.org/SMI.