Anti-lockdown protests are imploding — because the Koch network has soured on them: Columnist
Protesters at the Massachusetts state capitol in Boston (screengrab)

On Tuesday, writing for The Washington Post, columnist Kathleen Parker identified a key reason why the nationwide protests against stay-at-home orders are starting to fade away: Some of the key special interests bankrolling them have had second thoughts.

"Recent attempts to reenact the erstwhile tea party protests in a movement to oppose coronavirus-related shutdowns have shown signs of fizzling despite President Trump’s weird cheerleading," wrote Parker. "They are, after all, shouting down Trump’s own guidelines for trying to contain the new coronavirus, which has afflicted more than 1.4 million Americans and led to more than 81,000 deaths in the United States."

"The protesters began losing steam when the Koch network, underwriters of the tea party movement from a decade ago, decided to run with scientists instead of the gun-toting provocateurs trampling the spring-green grass around state capitols," wrote Parker. "The chief executive of Americans for Prosperity, the main political arm of the network, said the group prefers working with doctors, data crunchers and public policy leaders to create guidelines for a safe and staggered reopening of American businesses."

"While this approach may prove challenging, the concept itself is simple," wrote Parker. "Based on what we’ve learned since January, a modified return to 'normal' is the only prudent course of action, as credible experts have said again and again. But Trump, like a child who covers his ears and sings tra-la-la-la-la, prefers to hear only what erupts from his lips."

"As a president might have said, the virus is still with us, but we’ve so far prevailed despite great hurt, fear, unemployment, lost wages, depression, sadness, loneliness and grief over the sick and the dead," concluded Parker. "While staying apart, we have come together and learned new ways to live more simply, generously and compassionately. Those are not small things. Let’s not let our politics — or politicians — take that away."

You can read more here.