Cashed out: Koch brothers sit on wallets in '16

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David and Charles Koch, the wealthy brothers whose donor network has given hundreds of millions to Republican causes and candidates in the past, aren't going to pour cash into the third-party bid of Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson – and reportedly won't spend a dime on GOP candidates in 2016.

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A spokesman for the Kochs on Thursday contradicted a report by The Daily Caller – citing a source within the Johnson campaign – that they planned to spend "tens of millions of dollars" to support Johnson, who is all but assured to win the Libertarian presidential nomination.

Johnson, a former two-term Republican governor of New Mexico, also ran for president as a Libertarian in 2012, but barely garnered one percent of the vote.

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Cashed out: Koch brothers sit on wallets in '16
Businessman David Koch arrives at the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Gala Benefit celebrating the opening of "Charles James: Beyond Fashion" in Upper Manhattan, New York May 5, 2014. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri (UNITED STATES - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT FASHION BUSINESS HEADSHOT)
Businessman David Koch arrives at the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Gala Benefit celebrating the opening of "Charles James: Beyond Fashion" in Upper Manhattan, New York May 5, 2014. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri (UNITED STATES - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT FASHION BUSINESS HEADSHOT)
FILE - In this Aug. 30, 2013, file photo, David Koch speaks in Orlando, Fla. Republican presidential candidates Carly Fiorina and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker are to speak at gathering hosted by the conservative political donors Charles and David Koch. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack, File)
Businessman David Koch arrives at the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Gala Benefit celebrating the opening of "Charles James: Beyond Fashion" in Upper Manhattan, New York May 5, 2014. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri (UNITED STATES - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT FASHION BUSINESS)
EXCLUSIVE. Julia and David Koch, and their son host a party taking place at their home for the Charles Evans PCF Pro-AM TOUR 2012 Hamptons Tournament, benefiting the Prostate Cancer Foundation, in Southhampton, NY on August 18, 2012. The reclusive David Koch has a net worth of $25 billion. He is thought to have bankrolled the tea party, a connection however which he is evasive about. Strongly anti-Obama, he and his brother Charles have poured an estimated $400,000 million into the 2012 campaign. Photo by Art Seitz / ABACAUSA.COM
Businessman David Koch arrives at the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Gala Benefit celebrating the opening of "Charles James: Beyond Fashion" in Upper Manhattan, New York May 5, 2014. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri (UNITED STATES - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT FASHION BUSINESS HEADSHOT)
U.S. businessman and philanthropist David H. Koch is seen with an unidentifed guest as he arrives for the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Gala 2015 celebrating the opening of "China: Through the Looking Glass," in Manhattan, New York May 4, 2015. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly
Chairman of the board of Americans for Prosperity David Koch speaks at the Defending the American Dream summit hosted by Americans for Prosperity at the Greater Columbus Convention Center in Columbus, Ohio, Friday, Aug. 21, 2015. (AP Photo/Paul Vernon)
David H. Koch is photographed during a "turning of the soil" ceremony on the future site of The David H. Koch Center for Cancer Care, Wednesday, May 20, 2015, in New York. Koch has given $150 million to Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. His donation will help build a $1.3 billion, 23-story outpatient cancer center in Manhattan. It's expected to serve about 1,300 patients daily. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)
Americans for Prosperity Foundation Chairman David Koch, left, listens as Amway Founder Rich DeVos addresses attendees of the Defending the American Dream Summit in Orlando, Fla., Friday, Aug. 30, 2013. DeVos was presented with the George Washington Award.(AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)
Koch Industries executive VP David Koch speaks at the CANCER: The Emperor of All Maladies Television Launch Event hosted by Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C) and WETA at Remi on June 11(Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision for Stand Up 2 Cancer/AP Images)
David Koch, Executive Vice President of Koch Industries, Inc., attends The Economic Club of New York, Monday, Dec. 10, 2012. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)
David Koch, executive vice president of Koch Industries, attends a meeting of the Economic Club of New York, Monday, April 11, 2011. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)
David Koch, left, executive vice president of Koch Industries, and Susie Gharib, an anchor with the Nightly Business Report, attend a meeting of the Economic Club of New York, Monday, April 11, 2011. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)
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The Kochs originally planned to spend nearly $900 million on the 2016 campaign but have since scaled back their budget for the entire cycle to just $40 million, as part of an overhaul of their free-spending approach to politics.

"Reports that we are supporting or considering supporting any third party presidential candidate are false," Philip Ellender, a spokesman for the Kochs, told CBS.

Johnson also said he was not expecting a sudden influx of cash.

"To my knowledge, it's not happening," he told the Washington Post. "That's not to say it isn't, but it would be a surprise to me. We tried to talk to the Kochs during the last cycle, and we couldn't do it. There are a lot of people who are expressing interest, in a big way, to be a part of this, but I'm not naming names. I can say that I haven't reached out to the Kochs."

Given the Kochs' longtime affinity for libertarian causes – and and their disappointment with the results of the Republican nominating contest – raised hopes among conservatives longing for an alternative to presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump.

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But – for the time being – the Kochs seem burned out by how little their millions have done in shaping national policy. They failed to unseat President Barack Obama in 2012, despite spending more than $400 million in that election cycle.

And while Republicans in 2014 wrested control of the Senate and expanded the House GOP majority to historic proportions – due in no small part to the $300 million spent by the Koch network – the billionaire brothers have few policy victories to show for it.

Instead, they are "unlikely to spend a dime on the 2016 presidential election," according to a National Review report detailing their withdrawal from federal races this year.

"And as two of wealthiest men alive, they could instantaneously bankroll a campaign against Clinton on their own," the National Review explains.

"As of now, however, Koch insiders say that's unlikely to happen," it continues. "If they are right, Republicans will go into this fall's elections without the full support of their biggest benefactors, creating a void that could have lasting consequences for the GOP on the national stage."

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