The far-right is really upset that Twitter is taking actions to prevent a hostile takeover. While the company has not announced an official response to Elon Musk’s offer to buy, they’ve implemented a “poison pill” that can make it more difficult to buy a controlling percentage of stock without support of the board. Ron DeSantis wants to make the company hurt for it.
Musk’s offer to buy the company is separate from the risk that he (or another investor, potentially) might buy enough stock to take over without an agreement. Quartz explains how this works:
“A company concerned about an unwanted corporate takeover will put the plan in place and, after a triggering event—in Twitter’s case, if one person buys 15% of the stock without the board’s approval—all other shareholders will be afforded the opportunity to buy up more shares.”
Again, this does not mean that Musk cannot buy the company, if an agreement is reached. It only means that he cannot take control without the board’s agreement.
Still, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is describing this as “an injury” to shareholders, including Florida’s state employee pension system, which has investments in Twitter. Seeming to echo Donald Trump’s threats to use political power to punish Twitter for such perceived injuries as requiring users to follow site rules, DeSantis has announced that he’ll look into whether Florida can “holding these Twitter board of directors accountable for breaching their fiduciary duty.”
Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) threatens Twitter after it activated “poison pill” plan to prevent Elon Musk’s acquisition:
“We’re gonna be looking at ways the state of Florida potentially can be holding these Twitter board of directors accountable for breaching their fiduciary duty.” pic.twitter.com/55OFO90AjJ
— The Recount (@therecount) April 19, 2022
A law school graduate himself, DeSantis may already be aware of the difference between a sale and a hostile takeover, and that taking steps to prevent the latter is hardly a surprising step, particularly when a company has seen an individual shareholder indicate publicly that as owner, he’d take actions that might not be in the best interest of other investors.
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Steph Bazzle reports on social issues and religion for Hill Reporter. She focuses on stories that speak to everyone's right to practice what they believe in and receive the support of their communities and government officials. You can reach her at Steph@HillReporter.com