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Why the Biggest Winners in the Hobby Lobby Case May Be the Koch Brothers

Posted on Mar 27, 2014

By Bill Blum

(Page 2)

Over 90 percent of American businesses operate as closely held corporations, accounting for more than 51 percent of private sector output and 52 percent of private sector employment. Each year, Forbes magazine updates a list of the nation’s largest closely held companies. Ranked No. 1 on the most current list is the agricultural commodities giant Cargill Inc. with 140,000 employees and nearly $137 billion in annual revenue. Ranked No. 2, you guessed it, is Koch Industries with 60,000 employees and $115 billion in annual receipts. Just for the record, Hobby Lobby pulls down the No. 135 spot, raking in $3.3 billion a year and employing 23,000 workers. Conestoga, which is unranked, employs over 950 workers. 

Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood are also Schedule S companies, as is—you guessed it again—Koch Industries. Other notable S companies include engineering conglomerate Bechtel and multimedia Tribune Co. In total, approximately 4.5 million businesses operate as S corporations.

As long as the court recognizes the right of any for-profit corporation to religious liberty, there will be no way to contain the fallout to what any sane person might regard as small businesses. The right will apply to the minnows and the whales, including two of the primary architects of the relentless corporate personhood crusade, Charles and David Koch.

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