EXCLUSIVE: What Beck Told Koch Industries Secret Conference

››› ››› JOE STRUPP

Several participants in a secret conference sponsored by Koch Industries spoke to Media Matters about Glenn Beck's speech at the event. According to these participants, Beck's talk focused on the "free market," "less government interference," and "the collapse of the Constitution."

The multi-day event held last June in Aspen, Colo., included Beck's session, titled "Is America on the Road to Serfdom?" on June 27.

The conference was first reported on yesterday by The New York Times and Think Progress.

Each participant who spoke with us said Beck pushed a clear agenda for less government regulation and more pro-business approaches.

"It was more about what is happening with the United States, the collapse of the Constitution," said Mary Beth Weiss of Hinsdale, Ill., who attended with her husband, Richard. "The gist of the whole agenda of the meetings is free enterprise, less government. It was a principle of the founding fathers, freedom for unlimited prosperity and less government."

She added that: "I can only take so much of Glenn Beck. His presentation there was not as showman-like as it is on TV. I was far more enthralled with Charles Krauthammer."

Nestor Weigand of Wichita, Kan., and CEO of J.P. Weigand & Sons Real Estate, said Beck "was a guy who appeared to be very sincere in what he was doing. It was a multitude of focus, on free market, less government interference at all levels."

Weigand added about Beck's presentation: "It was about more elasticity in the marketplace and letting people sink or swim on their own. Just looking at a smaller government, less interference and knowing that government can't fix everything."

Weigand said he became a bigger fan of Beck after seeing him at the event. "When you have a chance to look at someone you can change your opinion and mine was more favorable," he said. "I had a chance to talk to him personally, he was sincere."

Weigand declined to reveal what he discussed with Beck.

Sue Wills of Dallas, Tex., who attended with her husband, Don, declined to comment on Beck. But she said she and some others there believe the Kochs are under attack from the government: "Obama doesn't like the Kochs. It is a pretty sad time in our country."

Another participant, Richard Weekley of Houston, said he saw Beck's presentation, saying only, "It was a very strong meeting, it was very stimulating."

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