David Koch stepping away from his empire for health reasons

Americans for Prosperity Foundation Chairman David Koch speaks in Orlando Fla. Koch is stepping down from the Koch brothers network of business and political activities. The 78-year-old cited health reasons in

"As a result, he is unable to be involved in business and other organisational activities".

He added: "David has never wanted anything for himself that he hasn't earned, as his sole desire has always been to contribute". That is up from $250 million in the 2016 elections. Last year, the network nearly single-handedly killed a tax on imported goods, known as the border-adjustment tax, that House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., wanted to use to pay for cuts to corporate and individual tax rates.

Koch's announcement came a day after groups backed by the two brothers said they would champion free trade and oppose tariffs with a multimillion-dollar campaign against USA president Donald Trump. In addition to the tax cuts, they also benefited from major deregulation and the appointment of scores of business-friendly judges. They have, however, distanced themselves from and disagreed with President Trump on a variety of issues.

David Koch, who now lives in NY, was raised in Wichita, Kansas.

Born and raised in Wichita, David Koch received his bachelor's and master's degrees in chemical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He and his wife, Julia Flesher Koch, have been married more than 20 years and have three children.

He was diagnosed with prostate cancer 25 years ago, and he has given vast sums toward cancer research in the quarter century since then. His David H. Koch Center at the NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, which he donated $100 million to, opened in April, and his outpatient cancer center at Memorial Sloan Kettering is on track to open in 2019. He has focused many of his philanthropic efforts on finding a cure for prostate cancer, including with contributions of almost $600 million to medical research and institutions. Koch officials said David Koch's donations and pledges to non-profit groups have topped $1.3 billion.

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David ran as a Libertarian candidate for president in 1980, and together the Koch brothers made large contributions to the Republican Party in 2010, facilitating the party's rise in the House of Representatives in that year's elections. His ticket, with Ed Clark, received just 1 percent of the popular vote.

"Due to health reasons, David Koch will be resigning from the board of the AFP Foundation".

"We greatly appreciate his vital role on the board and all that he has done to help us build a strong foundation for our future success", Mark Holden, general counsel of Koch Industries and co-chairman of the semi-annual donor summits the political network hosts, said in a statement.

The prominent Republican donors control Koch Industries, the second-largest private company in the United States, which has an annual revenue of $115bn (£86bn).

David Koch, executive vice president at Koch Industries, will become director emeritus.

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