Actor Zach Galifianakis referred to billionaires Charles and David Koch as ‘creepy’ Monday during an interview about his upcoming movie, “The Campaign.”
Galifianakis sat down with the New York Daily News for a serious conversation about politics. The comedian, crediting his Greek background for the interest, explained that the topic of public policy encompassed his entire childhood.
“Being of Greek background, it’s in our blood to drink coffee and talk politics,” Galifianakis told the newspaper. “We talked about politics constantly in my family growing up in North Carolina. There were always debates.”
He also mentioned that his new movie features a set of corrupt CEOs who skew the political process in order to satisfy their own demands. Hearing only the duo’s name, “the Motch brothers,” you can likely figure out who the screenwriter wanted to not-so-subtly reference.
“I think it is pretty obvious that the Motch brothers represent the Koch brothers,” said Galifianakis. “I disagree with everything they do. They are creepy and there is no way around that.”
However, he charges both Democrats and Republicans with political opacity, adding, “I understand Tea Partyers’ anger with the system, but they are in way over their heads.”
“The Campaign” isn’t the first Hollywood gem to take an aim at Charles and David Koch. HBO’s new television series, “The Newsroom,” also characterizes the businessmen in a negative light. One scene in particular, from the first season’s fifth episode, bashes the Institute for Justice (IJ), a public interest law firm which has received money from the Koch Family Foundations.
Yet IJ’s supporters lambasted this characterization as reckless and uninformed. In truth, 81 cents out of every dollar received by the institute goes directly into funding its pro bono litigation programs. These programs are widely recognized for defending individual’s property and land rights from eminent domain seizures by developers like Donald Trump.
The Koch brothers believe most of these attacks, from Galifianakis and others alike, are mere misinterpretations of their ideals.
“We disagree with his uninformed characterization of Koch and our beliefs,” said Koch Cos. spokesman Philip Ellender. “His comments, which appear to be based on false attacks made by our political opponents, demonstrate a lack of understanding of our longstanding support of individual freedom, freedom of expression and constitutional rights.”