Al Sharpton has blown the lid off accusations by the New York Post that the Reverend Al shakes down businesses for racial hush money. Sharpton pulled no punches in an exclusive interview with The Daily Caller, directly implicating News Corp. while also inadvertently admitting racial influence.
“Rupert Murdoch has given, through News Corp, money to us and that we’re on the board, on their, have been on their diversity board. I am going to force you to use the quote I give you because that is the only quote I am giving you.”
As reported on Sunday, Sharpton was accused of taking payments by corporations to polish their racial image or avoid being labeled racist. According to the article, Sharpton’s National Action Network has accepted thousands of dollars in donations and consultancy fees in order to maintain his silence or sway the black community. It is even alleged that Sony Pictures co-chair Amy Pascal met with Sharpton after leaked emails detailed comments she made about Barack Obama.
But now Al Sharpton is fighting back, and rather than completely deny the allegations, Rev. Al has chosen to drag the N.Y. Post into the scandal by accusing them of also making donations to his company.
“I am not going to let them get around the fact that their company has been involved, has donated money, had us on their board of diversity.”
In the interview, Sharpton revealed that he met Rupert Murdoch in 2009 during protests he led outside the New York Post’s offices after it published a cartoon that many believed compared President Obama to a chimpanzee.
“I met with Murdoch, he issued a statement, and we let it go. After that they formed this diversity board where we were supposed to have input, then the board fell apart.”
Sharpton continued to reveal that News Corp. started buying $5,000 to $10,000 tables at his NAN events, although he denied that the money influenced putting an end to the protests.
But perhaps even more damning than his accusations about the Post’s own involvement in racial donations was the revelation that he did indeed try to influence the then New York Governor David Patterson in facilitating the opening of a race track casino in Queens.
In 2008, the Connecticut hedge fund, Plainfield Asset Management, funneled $500,000 to the National Action Network via a group promoting education equity. Plainfield Asset Management was vying for a license for the new Queens casino.
The N.Y. Post cited a 2009 email from a consortium member that “Sharpton lobbied Governor Patterson hard over the weekend on our behalf.”
Sharpton eventually admitted in the interview that he did discuss race with Paterson in regards to the opening of the casino.
“I talked to, uh, Governor Patterson several times about the casino bidding thing—that I hoped that whoever he gives it to that they will, uh, commit to doing business with some of the minority entrepreneurs that are going to be in the area.”
Other revelations published about Sharpton included the allegation that in 2003 he “targeted” Honda in an email that accused the company of under-representation of black employees.
“We cannot be silent while African-Americans spend hard-earned dollars with a company that does not hire, promote or do business with us in a statistically significantly manner.”
Conveniently, the reverend halted protest around the time that Honda started sponsoring his NAN events. Sharpton defended his right to request information on a company’s diversity and insisted that “Honda had given us money before that [email] and since then and still does.”
Al Sharpton, who makes $241,000 a year as the head of the National Action Network, claims Murdoch and the New York Post are attacking him because of his anti-police brutality statements.
[Photo: Andrew Burton/Getty]