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Opinion: McConnell's self-defeating battle against woke CEOs

April 7, 2021. Summarized by summa-bot.

Compression ratio: 24.1%. 2 min read.

Lincoln Mitchell writes that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's recent warning to corporate CEOs of America that they would face serious consequences for using "economic blackmail" is neither a gaffe nor a misstatement. Rather, it reflects the state of a Republican Party that is settling into its post-Trump identity.

McConnell's "advice" to the business leaders to "stay out of politics" and not to pick sides "in these big fights" came after several major American companies, including Delta and Coca-Cola, which are both headquartered in Georgia, condemned the state's new laws restricting ballot access and Major League Baseball decided to move this year's All-Star Game out of Atlanta in protest of the move by the Republican-controlled state government.

Although McConnell's comments appeared most targeted at corporate response to Georgia's new law regarding voting, he expanded his critique of business taking positions on political issues that differ from those of the GOP.

While McConnell may be upset about business opposing Republican efforts to make it more difficult for people to vote, his party would suffer if CEOs decided to stay out of politics by stopping their campaign contributions.

By speaking out against businesses who oppose the new Georgia law, as McConnell and others including some in the Georgia state legislature and several Republican US senators have done, the Republicans have made it clear that, rather than proposing a cohesive conservative vision for America, they are continuing to emphasize the politics of White grievance that have always been an integral part of Trump's political support.

While it faces an uphill battle in the Senate, McConnell and the GOP would face further political peril if the business community decided to support that proposal with the same energy they have mobilized against the voter suppression laws in Georgia.

McConnell's true feelings about Trump may well be complex as suggested, for example, in his comments following the impeachment trial, but that is precisely why it is important for his own political future that he convince Republican voters and leaders that he recognizes Trump's role in the party.

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