Bio-Rad Laboratories Inc. | Political disclosures at Bio-Rad Laboratories Inc.

15.64% votes in favour
AGM date
Proposal number
Resolution details
Company ticker
Lead filer
Resolution ask
Report on or disclose
ESG theme
  • Governance
ESG sub-theme
  • Lobbying / political engagement
Type of vote
Shareholder proposal
Filer type
Company sector
Health Care
Company HQ country
United States
Resolved clause
Resolved: James McRitchie, of, requests Bio-Rad Laboratories Inc. (“Bio-Rad” or “Company”) provide a report, updated semiannually, disclosing Bio-Rad’s:

Policies and procedures for making, with corporate funds or assets, contributions and expenditures (direct or indirect) to (a) participate or intervene in any campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for public office, or (b) influence the general public, or any segment thereof, with respect to an election or referendum.

Monetary and non-monetary contributions and expenditures (direct and indirect) used in the manner described in section 1 above, including:

The identity of the recipient as well as the amount paid to each; and

The title(s) of the person(s) in the Company responsible for decision-making.

The report shall be presented to the board of directors or relevant board committee and posted on Bio-Rad’s website within 12 months after the annual meeting. This proposal does not encompass lobbying spending.
Supporting statement
Supporting Statement: As long-term shareholders of Bio-Rad, we support transparency and accountability in corporate electoral spending. This includes any activity considered intervention in a political campaign under the Internal Revenue Code, such as direct and indirect contributions to political candidates, parties, or organizations, and independent expenditures or electioneering communications on behalf of federal, state, or local candidates.

Political spending can adversely impact a company’s reputation, value, and bottom line. The risk is especially serious when involving trade associations, Super PACs, 527 committees, and “social welfare” organizations – groups that routinely pass money to or spend on behalf of candidates and political causes companies might not otherwise support.

The Conference Board’s “Under a Microscope”(1) details these risks, recommends the process suggested in this proposal, and warns:

a new era of stakeholder scrutiny, social media, and political polarization has propelled corporate political activity—and the risks that come with it—into the spotlight. Political activity can pose increasingly significant risks for companies, including the perception that political contributions—and other forms of activity—are at odds with core company values.

We ask Bio-Rad to disclose all its electoral spending, including payments to trade associations and other tax-exempt organizations, which may be used for electoral purposes–and are otherwise undisclosed. This would bring our Company in line with leading companies, including Becton, Dickinson and Company, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, and Boston Scientific Corp.

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