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News Corp. investors oppose Murdoch sons

Vote tallies show one-third opposition to Lachlan, James

It’s a bad time to be a Murdoch on the News Corp. board, according to vote tallies released by the company Monday afternoon.

Shareholders re-elected all 15 of the company’s directors at Friday’s annual stockholders meeting, but Lachlan Murdoch and James Murdoch earned 224,151,616 nays out of 665,058,572 total votes and 232,013,203 nays out of 665,041,713 total votes, respectively — the highest number of negative votes received by anyone on the board. Both are the sons of chairman-CEO Rupert Murdoch, who received 91,798,107 nays out of a total of 653,483,832 votes — on the low end of negative tallies.

Shareholders overwhelmingly rejected a proposal to elect an independent chairman, a move that would have ultimately relieved the eldest Murdoch of that role. The proposal earned just 1,517,604 in favor, with 680,583,000 against.

With control of 40% of voting shares, the Murdochs were in little danger of getting ousted from the board despite the phone-hacking scandal at News of the World and investigations into parent company News Intl. Investors at last week’s meeting also voiced concerns over the board’s oversight, which many saw as contributing to the scandal.

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