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Washington, D.C. – At Wednesday’s annual shareholder meetings of Amazon, McDonald’s, PayPal and FirstEnergy, shareholders will have the opportunity to vote on proposals from the National Center for Public Policy Research’s Free Enterprise Project (FEP) designed to help these corporations shed their left-leaning ways and return to political neutrality.

The proposals at Amazon and McDonald’s both target the companies’ radical political positions and donations, which risk alienating huge swathes of consumers and shareholders and threaten the companies’ bottom lines.

Since Amazon has allied itself with radical groups such as Black Lives Matter (BLM), the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) and the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, FEP’s proposal (Proposal 5) asks that a board committee be created “to oversee and review the impact of the Company’s policy positions, advocacy, partnerships and charitable giving on social and political matters, and the effect of those actions on the Company’s financial sustainability.”

FEP notes in its supporting statement that BLM, rather than “being an organization that fights systemic racism, has shown itself to embody the evil, calling for the destruction of Israel and boosting antisemitism.” HRC “seeks to sow gender confusion in primary school children while destroying girls’ and women’s sports, threatening the safety of the most vulnerable, and demolishing long-standing religious freedoms.” And the Lawyers’ Committee “has opposed cash bail and other sensible public safety measures that put urban minority groups at particular risk [so that Amazon’s support is] itself an act of systemic discrimination.”

Stefan Padfield

Stefan Padfield

“As the recent cases of Bud Light, Target and Disney demonstrate, embracing such radical leftist positions is no longer costless,” says Free Enterprise Project Deputy Director Stefan Padfield, who will present the Amazon proposal. “In fact, it can destroy billions of dollars of shareholder value.”

Last year McDonald’s was listed as a corporate partner on the website of GLSEN, which advocates for concealing a student’s preferred gender identity from parents, providing sexually explicit books to minors and integrating gender ideology at all levels of curriculum in public schools—all behavior that seeks to build barriers between parents and their children. This partnership has since vanished from the website, but it’s unclear whether it has vanished in reality.

“Current disclosure is insufficient to allow shareholders to evaluate the proper use of corporate assets given to third-party organizations,” FEP says in the supporting statement of its McDonald’s proposal (Proposal 10), and thus is asking that the McDonald’s website list any recipient of material donations from the Company, excluding employee matching gifts.

Scott Shepard

Scott Shepard

“While McDonald’s relies on its ‘Global Compliance Guidelines for Charitable Contributions Policy’ as surety for its oversight regime, it doesn’t link to or cite that policy, and the policy can’t be found on its website or by general web search,” adds FEP Director Scott Shepard, who will be presenting the McDonald’s proposal. “In replying on an unavailable document to support a disinformational claim, McDonald’s is clearly hiding something. Shareholders have a legal right to better treatment.”

FEP’s proposal at PayPal (Proposal 5) addresses the company’s discrimination toward employees it either deems as non-diverse or whose beliefs aren’t in line with those of corporate executives.

PayPal “received an abysmal score of 5%” on the 2023 Viewpoint Diversity Score Business Index, FEP notes in its supporting statement, adding that the company has been “injecting illegal considerations of race and sex into every supplier-recruitment decision, thus discriminating against suppliers arbitrarily deemed ‘non-diverse.’ And as PayPal actively discriminates against disfavored ‘non-diverse’ people such as whites, men, straight people and religious believers, no such groups are represented by any ‘employee resource group,’ while favored ‘diverse’ groups — benefiting from Company discrimination — have a series of surface-characteristic-based lobbying groups. This further indicates systemic discrimination at PayPal against the ‘non-diverse.’”

Finally, FEP’s FirstEnergy proposal (Proposal 6) criticizes the company for committing to energy goals such as net-zero emissions and the phase-out of all coal-fired power generation without doing its due diligence to consider all research and possible outcomes.

For instance, if a recent study by the Energy Policy Research Foundation (EPRF) holds true, “our Company stands to lose its renewable energy investments, plus the costs of reverting back to reliable energy sources such as coal,” FEP says in its supporting statement.

To combat FirstEnergy’s all-eggs-in-one-basket approach, FEP’s proposal requests “an audited report assessing how applying the findings of the Energy Policy Research Foundation and similar studies would affect the assumptions, costs, estimates, and valuations underlying its financial statements.”

More information about these proposals, as well as other key votes, can be found in FEP’s mobile and web app, ProxyNavigator.



The National Center for Public Policy Research, founded in 1982, is a non-partisan, free-market, independent conservative think-tank. Ninety-four percent of its support comes from individuals, less than four percent from foundations and less than two percent from corporations. It receives over 350,000 individual contributions a year from over 60,000 active recent contributors. Contributions are tax-deductible and may be earmarked for the Free Enterprise Project. Sign up for email updates at

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Author: The National Center