A billionaire bully believes conservative states and cities will value jobs with his company more than their citizens’ rights.
Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff, who also owns TIME magazine, was apparently emboldened after a faceoff with Indiana’s then-Governor Mike Pence. He threatened economic repercussion over a state abortion bill that was eventually weakened to meet his demands.
The Daily Wire further reported:
Speaking to Poppy Harlow of CNN on Friday, Benioff boasted of “making something happen that supports our employees,” adding, “The number one thing is we must have our employees’ back.”
Then he waxed political, with an apparent attempt to denigrate conservatives: “You know and I know we are dealing with a whole series of crazy presidents, crazy governors, crazy mayors all over the world in every country in every city in every state.”
“Marc, who is crazy?” Harlow pressed.
“I’m really talking about all of the situations that I’ve had to go through, over the last decade, especially where our employees will contact me and say something is just not right,” Benioff hinted.
Benioff and Harlow discussed what happened in 2o15, when Benioff threatened to pull Salesforce out of Indiana when the state had passed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, signed by then-governor of Indiana Mike Pence.
The day before Pence signed the bill, Benioff threatened to reduce his company’s investment in Indiana; after Pence signed the bill Benioff stated he would cancel Salesforce programs requiring customers or employees to travel to Indiana. The week after that, he publicly announced he would offer relocation packages to employees choosing to leave the state,
Pence would end up signing a revised version of the bill.
Harlow asked if Benioff would pull his company from states that had outlawed abortion or passed stricter laws against it.
“We actually just said, if you are going to discriminate against our employees, we won’t be able to set up shop there,” Benioff bragged of 2015. “And when we said that, 200 other companies the next day, the largest companies in the United States all said, ‘We agree. We have to support our LGBTQ communities as well.’”
“Look, we have to be for equality, we have to be for dignity. We have to be for the equality and dignity of every human being. And if you’re not for equality and dignity, then this is not something I can work with and we’re gonna have to exit your city or your state, just as we have in many places.”
Salesforce has more than 2,000 employees in Indiana and has received tens of millions in state incentives for job creation and retention. It would cost hundreds of millions to build a new office complex to house them, after the tremendous jump in property and building costs over the last decade.
Assuming Benioff could find 2,200 qualified employees to fill the jobs in a new state, he would have to repay the Indiana incentives that subsidized his building and hiring costs.
Scroll down to leave a comment and share your thoughts.