Democracy Now: Murdoch Appears Before U.K. Phone-Hacking Panel
News Corp. chief executive Rupert Murdoch appeared before a British inquiry on Wednesday to face new questions on the phone-hacking scandal that has engulfed his media empire. Under questioning from inquiry chair Robert Jay, Murdoch repeatedly denied allegations of using his vast media holdings to promote British politicians who aided his financial interests.
Rupert Murdoch: “Mr. Jay, you keep inferring that endorsements were motivated by business motives. And if that had been the case, we would have endorsed the Tory party in every election. It was always more pro-business. You know, after a while, if these lies are repeated again and again, they sort of catch on. And particularly if we’re successful, people who are resentful can grab onto them. But they just aren’t true.”
Returning to testify earlier today, Murdoch apologized for the hacking scandal, saying he had failed to pay sufficient attention to the goings-on at his now-defunct newspaper, the News of the World. Outside the British inquiry, members of the online group Avaaz gathered to call for a full accounting for Murdoch’s dealings with top British politicians.
Will Davies: “We know that Rupert Murdoch met many ministers and the prime minister, and the purpose of the Leveson Inquiry is to find out who knew what when. And if heads need to roll, they should roll. The type of crimes that the Murdochs and their staff are accused of—bribing police, hacking schoolgirls’ phones—they’re outrageous, and people will not stand for another cover-up.”