Murdoch Empire 2.0 or socialist witch-hunt? MPs debate Fox-Sky deal as culture secretary decides whether to refer bid to Ofcom

 
William Turvill
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Rupert Murdoch is executive chairman of 21st Century Fox (Source: Getty)

Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox is preparing to make its case to culture secretary Karen Bradley as she decides whether to submit the company’s takeover bid for Sky News to broadcast regulator Ofcom.

Interested parties have until Wednesday afternoon to submit representations to Bradley.

Read more: Government "minded" to scrutinise Fox takeover of Sky

After Fox and Sky formally submitted their deal to the European Commission on Friday, Bradley has 10 working days to decide whether to refer the deal to Ofcom.

Speaking in the House of Commons this afternoon, Bradley confirmed that she is “minded” to do so due to concerns over media plurality and whether Fox will maintain broadcasting standards at Sky.

Read more: News Corp posts second loss in a row amid print advertising headwinds

Several MPs spoke out against the deal, including former Labour leader Ed Miliband and Tom Watson, deputy Labour leader and shadow culture secretary, who said the takeover would mean “Empire 2.0” for the Murdoch family.

Tory MP Jacob Rees-Mogg asked that Bradley be “certain not to involve herself in this socialist witch-hunt against Mr Murdoch” and his companies.

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