Warren Buffet’s $93.4 billion estate could go to his family foundation that supports abortion rights
The bulk of Warren Buffett’s $93.4 billion estate could go to his little-known family foundation that supports abortion rights — not the Gates Foundation, as executives intended.
Gates Foundation executives have for years expected the billionaire to donate the majority of his shares in his company, Berkshire Hathaway, to the global organization after his death — and have discussed how best to use the money, according to the Wall Street Journal.
He had previously committed in 2006 to donate 85 percent of his shares in his company to charitable causes – five-sixths of the shares of which would go to the Gates Foundation over the course of his life.
From there, he pledged to donate a fixed, decreasing number of Berkshire “B” shares to the Gates Foundation and to the four foundations managed by his family members, according to Fortune†
But his 2006 letter was vague about what would happen to his fortune if he died, with Buffett writing only to the Gateses at the time: “I will shortly write a new will that will ensure a continuation of this union through the division of the remaining earmarked shares or otherwise after my death.’
Then in 2010 he announced that he planned to give away 99 percent of his wealth after he died, saying in a Giving Pledge, “My family and I will not give up anything we need or want by taking this 99% pledge.” to fulfill.’
Now, the Journal reports, the Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation — named after his late wife and run by his son-in-law Allen Greenberg — is hiring additional staff and plans to spend a huge amount of money it expects to receive, with Buffett being put in charge. august 92.
The organization — which has reportedly donated large sums to abortion rights groups and is largely run by Buffett’s friends and family, with many of his children and grandchildren on its boards — has recently expanded with staff in Washington DC and Rwanda.
It is also reportedly now looking at ways to spend a large sum of money — an estimated $70 to $100 billion — on both international and U.S. efforts, focusing on reproductive health and primary health — including expanding into vaccinations and infectious diseases. , an area on which the Gates Foundation is globally focused.
Warren Buffett could eventually donate a large amount of his $93.4 billion to the foundation his late wife Susan left, founded in 1964 – which donates large sums to abortion groups
Buffett, right, now 91, has pledged earlier in 2006 to reserve a majority of his shares in his Berkshire Hathaway company for the Gates Foundation over the course of his life — and company executives had expected a large amount of his unpledged shares after are dead
The Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation was established in 1964 by his then-wife — who was apparently an activist for abortion rights and access to contraceptives — to provide scholarships to students in Buffett’s home state of Nebraska.
To be website also only describes the scholarships it issues, with information on how to apply.
At the bottom of the site it says: ‘The Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation only answers questions about scholarships. The Foundation does not respond to other questions.’
But according to the Journal, the organization has spent most of its money on access to abortion and reproductive health issues.
It mostly makes its donations anonymously, in keeping with Susan Buffett’s desire to focus on organizations doing the work rather than those writing the checks, unnamed sources told the Journal.
And the majority of the checks go to organizations like Planned Parenthood, the Center for Reproductive Rights and the National Network Abortion.
Between 2000 and 2018, it poured $4 billion into organizations that lobby for abortion rights, according to the Capital Research Centerand of that $4 billion, it paid about $675 million to Planned Parenthood of America and its international and state affiliates.
It has also reportedly donated more than $112 million to the Guttmacher Institute, an abortion rights think tank, and $293 million to the National Abortion Federation.
Susan Thompson Buffett, pictured in an undated photo with Warren and their daughter, also named Susan, was a staunch supporter of abortion rights
Buffett has previously said that he had his wife set up the organization in 1964 because he knew little about philanthropy.
But after Susan died in 2004 at age 72, he decided to become more involved in philanthropy — and instead focused his efforts on the Gates Foundation, which was then run by the world’s richest couple.
He said at the time that he decided to partner with Bill and Melinda French Gates because he trusted them to give the money away to help society and fund the causes of vaccines and infectious diseases than the smaller Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation.
“I came to realize that there was a great foundation that had already scaled up — that didn’t have to go through the real rut to get to mega size like the Buffett Foundation would — and that could now use my money productively,” he told Fortune magazine at the time.
According to the Journal, the Buffett Foundation only had about $270 million in assets in 2006, and in another letter, Buffett announced that he would be reserving shares worth about $3 billion to the foundation.
A third set of shares would be divided equally among three foundations led by his children – pledging additional shares to the organizations in 2012.
After Susan died, Buffett turned his efforts to the Gates Foundation, which was then run by the world’s richest couple.
After Bill and Melinda Gates’ public split, Buffett announced he was stepping down from the board — but he and Bill Gates still deny having a friendship
Following Buffett’s last donation to the Gates Foundation earlier this month, Bill Gates tweeted that the donations are ‘moving me to tears’
Expecting to get the most money after Buffett’s death, however, the Journal reports, Gates Foundation CEOs, dozens of employees and consultants at management consultancy McKinsey and Co. participated in years of analysis and a plan they dubbed Project Lincoln. .
One of the ideas was to create a world children’s savings bank, where each child would receive thousands of dollars, according to the Journal.
But over the years, it seems Buffett, now 91, has grown dissatisfied with the Gates Foundation.
Sources close to the discussions told the Journal that Buffett has shared his dismay at what he saw as the inflated size of the foundation, and asked to limit the number of employees — leading to job losses in 2015.
He also would not agree with the number of advisors that the foundation has hired.
Eventually, Buffett started skipping board meetings, the Journal reports, and just months after Bill and Melinda Gates announced they would be stepping down, Buffett announced he was stepping down from the board.
“My goals are 100% aligned with those of the foundation, and my physical participation is in no way necessary to achieve these goals,” he said in a statement last year.
He also said he’s committed to donating more money to charity rather than donating his time, calling the work of people donating both time and effort “a far more admirable form of philanthropy than mine.”
Both Gates and Buffett have since denied that his resignation was related to Gates’ divorce, and Buffett continued to visit his old friend.
And after donating his latest donation to the Gates Foundation, Gates tweeted, “I am grateful for Warren’s donations to support the foundation’s work and for our many years of friendship.
“When he decided to make these gifts in 2006, I was moved to tears. It still does.’