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Biden: Georgia needs to ‘smarten up’ to avoid losing business

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Joe Biden

President Joe Biden praised businesses for opposing new voting laws while telling Georgia and other states to “smarten up.”

Speaking to reporters Tuesday, Biden said “it’s reassuring to see that for-profit operations and businesses are speaking up about how these new Jim Crow laws that are just antithetical to who we are.”

“There’s another side to it too. When they in fact move out of Georgia, people who need help most, people who are making hourly wages, sometimes get hurt the most,” he continued.

Biden then went on to say that he supports and respects businesses’ decisions to protest the new voting legislation.

“I think it’s a very tough decision for a corporation to make or group to make, I respect them when they make that judgment, I support whatever judgment they make. The best way to deal with this is for Georgia and other states to smarten up. Stop it, stop it,” he said.

Biden said last week that he would “strongly support” moving the MLB All-Star Game out of Georgia to protest the new voting laws, joining other corporations condemning the new laws such as Delta Air Lines and Coca-Cola.

Less than two days later, the MLB announced it would relocate the game, citing Georgia’s “restrictions to the ballot box.”

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky) told reporters Tuesday that he does not support corporations taking sides on “incendiary issues” such as the new Georgia legislation.

“I’m not talking about political contributions,” McConnell told reporters in Kentucky. “Most of them contribute to both sides. They have political action committees. That’s fine. It’s legal. It’s appropriate. I support that. I’m talking about taking a position on a highly incendiary issue like this and punishing a community or state because you don’t like a particular law they passed. I just think it’s stupid. … What I’m saying here is I think this is quite stupid.”

McConnell continued, arguing that companies will lose business by choosing sides.

“Republicans drink Coca-Cola, too, and we fly, and we like baseball,” he said. “It’s irritating one hell of a lot of Republican fans.”

Follow Annaliese Levy on Twitter @AnnalieseLevy

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Chevron downsizes global San Fran headquarters, paying for employees to move to Texas office

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Oil giant Chevron made a huge announcement saying it will be closing its current global headquarters in San Ramon, California. Even more telling, its encouraging employees to move to Houston, Texas.

The San Francisco Gate reported “the oil company will cover relocation costs for those voluntarily leaving for the Texas office, which has been growing and employs nearly 6,000 people. Meanwhile, the San Ramon office buildings have experienced dwindling numbers in recent years.”

Although the company is not leaving the state completely, “company leadership has pushed for a permanent move to Texas in the past” adds SFGATE. Chevron, which has had “deep roots” in California going back to the late 1800s, will vacate its 100-acre campus in 2023.

The Wall Street Journal reports the business hopes to move into a smaller space in San Ramon, which will remain its headquarters. A company spokesperson told SFGATE “the current real estate market provides the opportunity to right-size our office space to meet the requirements of our headquarters-based employee population.”

“The move is expected to occur during the third quarter of 2023” they continued. “Chevron will remain headquartered in California, where the company has a 140-year history and operations and partnerships throughout the state.”

The SFGATE notes Chevron is one of “the East Bay’s legacy companies joining the trend” to move their headquarters out of the area in recent years. Tech companies such as startups like Coinbase to industry pioneers like Hewlett Packard and Oracle have all vacated, with Elon Musk having been “one particularly outspoken voice decrying California’s business conditions.”

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