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FILE PHOTO: 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/File Photo

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump on Tuesday criticized billionaire industrialists Charles and David Koch as "globalist" and "a total joke," saying he says did not need the powerful conservative donor brothers' money or support.

Trump's comments follow media reports that the Koch donor network sought to distance itself from Trump and the Republican Party at a weekend gathering in Colorado where concerns were also raised that his trade policies could fuel a recession.

"The globalist Koch Brothers, who have become a total joke in real Republican circles, are against strong borders and powerful trade. I never sought their support because I don’t need their money or bad ideas," Trump said in a post on Twitter.

"Their network is highly overrated, I have beaten them at every turn."

(Reporting by Susan Heavey; editing by John Stonestreet)

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Reuters