NY Times: News Corp. shareholder objects to GOP donations

Blog ››› ››› ERIC HANANOKI

The New York Times' Michael Shear reports that the Nathan Cummings Foundation, a News Corp. shareholder which promotes progressive causes, "has written a letter to [News Corp.'s] board objecting to its political contributions to Republican causes. ... In the letter, obtained by The Caucus, the foundation calls for complete disclosure of all political spending by the News Corp. before Friday, when the company's board of directors meets for its annual shareholders meeting."

News Corp., the parent company of Fox News, has donated $1 million to the Republican Governors' Association and the GOP-aligned Chamber of Commerce. Last week, the Politico reported that News Corp. head Rupert Murdoch said that News Corp. "didn't expect" the donation to become public, raising the question of whether the company has made any other political donations that haven't become public.

From the Times' article:

The letter reads, in part: "The apparent lack of a strategic rationale for News Corp. raises very serious concerns for shareholders as to whether Mr. Murdoch and the rest of the News Corp. Board of Directors are truly taking shareholder interests into account when they approve political payments made with shareholders' assets."

The letter concludes that without full disclosure, "there are clear reputational risks involved in political expenditures - particularly for a news media company - and unnecessary potential for abuse of corporate treasury funds to further the personal political agendas of corporate management."

Teri Everett, a spokeswoman for News Corp., declined comment after receiving a copy of the letter.

News Corp.
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