Samueli Fundraiser Raises Questions:
Why is Whitman Conspiring to Raise Campaign Cash With Embattled Broadcom Tycoon?
Sacramento – An exclusive, posh fundraiser hosted tonight by billionaire Henry Samueli raises serious questions about why Meg Whitman would draw herself further into the web of corporate greed and corruption epitomized by Broadcom, the company Samueli led until he was forced out amidst the nation’s largest stock backdating scandal.
“Meg Whitman’s decision to hold a high-dollar fundraiser with another billionaire CEO whose questionable practices have drawn the attention of federal investigators is both troubling and illuminating,” said Art Pulaski, executive secretary-treasurer of the California Labor Federation. “It’s clear that Whitman is growing bolder in her shameless attempt to buy this election. The fact that she would consort with controversial corporate figures like Samueli to fatten her already bloated war chest shows a serious lapse in judgment.”
Billionaire CEO Whitman will spend Monday evening collecting giant checks from corporate insiders at Samueli’s Corona Del Mar mansion in an event that was not made public.
“With millions of Californians out of work and struggling to hold onto their jobs in the aftermath of Wall Street’s economic meltdown, it certainly doesn’t sit well that Whitman’s spending her time raking in fat checks with corporate insiders at a beachside mansion,” Pulaski added.
A look under the surface shows Whitman and Samueli have more in common than being billionaire CEOs. Both were corporate insiders whose companies were involved in questionable insider deals that made millions for executives at the expense of shareholders. Both Whitman and Samueli’s companies have been targets of federal investigations into the very same kind of shady Wall Street dealings that drove the economy into meltdown.
Samueli’s Broadcom was involved in the nation’s largest stock backdating scandal after it failed to disclose to investors that the company had reset the dates of company stock grants to executives in order to artificially boost profits. Broadcom’s backdating scheme resulted an SEC investigation and Samueli’s ouster, and Broadcom eventually paid $160.5 million in investor settlements. Samueli has pleaded guilty to lying to federal investigators, but in an unusual move, a judge threw out the guilty plea. Samueli returned to Broadcom earlier this year as chief technology officer.
Back in 2001, Whitman was a Goldman Sachs board member who was directly involved in the decisions about executive bonuses and mortgage-backed securities that are now cited as major causes of the economic meltdown and the ensuing jobs crisis. Whitman pocketed almost $ 2 million by “spinning” sweetheart stock deals she scored as a reward for bringing Goldman lucrative investment banking contracts, a practice that soon became illegal.
Whitman resigned from the board after a Congressional probe into spinning, but Goldman is still dealing with the aftermath of SEC investigations into the company’s shady dealings, and recently coughed up more than $500 million to satisfy the charges.
“The last thing California’s working families need is more of the same corporate greed and corruption that destroyed our economy,” Pulaski continued. “Cozying up to corporate insiders in order to get elected shows that Whitman remains tone-deaf to the growing concerns voters have about her Wall Street ties and agenda.”
For more background on Henry Samueli and the Broadcom backdating scandal, click here.
Paid for by the California Labor Federation.
Not authorized by a candidate or committee controlled by a candidate.