By Derrick Sontag, Kansas State Director, Americans for Prosperity. Kansas was one of the first states to have an AFP chapter.
In recent weeks members of the press and even President Barack Obama have asked, “Who is Americans for Prosperity?” In asking this, many have implied AFP is just a front group for large corporations or as President Obama speculated, perhaps it’s even a “foreign controlled entity.”
The answer is simple. Americans For Prosperity is a non-partisan, grassroots-driven organization that advocates for limited government and free market principles, principles under constant attack at every level of government today.
AFP provides a voice for its more than 1.5 million activist members, including 40,000 in Kansas, to counter the powerful big government lobby that hovers on Capitol Hill and in state capitols like ours in Topeka. Being a part of an organization like AFP provides concerned citizens the tools to directly challenge the progressive agenda being advocated for by the multitude of special interest groups that try to influence elected officials on a daily basis.
Since its inception in 2004, AFP has advocated for personal property rights, lower taxes and fewer government regulations, and to slow down the growth in government spending. Recently, we’ve voiced loud opposition to the numerous bailouts in which the government is picking the winners and losers in the marketplace, an act that threatens the viability of the free market itself. We have been vocal in opposing job-destroying legislation like cap and trade that would dramatically increase consumer prices and drive American businesses to countries with fewer regulations or force them to close up shop altogether. Perhaps most of all, the liberal elite dislikes us because of our opposition to the government takeover of our health care system.
With a simple yet vitally important agenda like that, it’s no wonder we’re being targeted by members of the liberal elite. President Obama recently said that the “biggest problem we all have across the country right now … is groups like Americans For Prosperity.” Not the near ten percent unemployment rate but rather, the biggest problem according to the president is groups like AFP daring to challenge the progressive policies being put forth across the country.
With this apparent coordinated attack on AFP and its limited government and free market oriented platform, one could easily conclude there are some in this country who fear that our message is resonating with the American people.