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The Latest: Koch rep says bill insufficiently conservative

COLORADO SPRING, Colo. (AP) — The Latest on the Koch brothers’ weekend conference (all times local):

4 p.m.

Chief lieutenants in the Koch brothers’ political network are condemning the Senate Republican health care bill as insufficiently conservative.

The leader for the Koch network’s political arm, Tim Phillips, says the Senate bill “needs to get better.” He calls the Senate’s plans for Medicaid “a slight nip and tuck” over President Barack Obama’s health care law.

The network is a powerful outside critic as GOP leaders try to rally support for their plan among rank-and-file Republicans.

The comments Saturday come on the first day of a three-day private Koch donor retreat at a luxury resort in the Rocky Mountains.

No outside group has been move aggressive over the yearslong push to repeal Obama’s health care law than the Kochs’ network.

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1:15 p.m.

Retired football star Deion Sanders is partnering with the conservative Koch brothers to help fight poverty in Texas.

The unlikely partnership, announced on Saturday, aims to raise $21 million over the next three years to fund anti-poverty programs in Dallas. Sanders joined Koch donors at a weekend conference in Colorado Springs, Colorado to help raise money for the new venture, called Prime 5.

He is also defending the billionaire industrialist Charles Koch, often demonized by Democrats, as someone simply “trying to make the world a better place.”

Sanders is dismissing questions about whether the Koch partnership would invite political controversy into his efforts to strengthen poor communities.

He says, “I’ve been booed simultaneously by 90,000 (people) that sung my name like a quartet. I could care less.”

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