Jennifer Granholm on Corporations

Democratic Governor (MI)


Executive pay imbalance is improper from moral standpoint

Corporate executives think in terms of numbers. When it comes to compensation, they see a fraction: Their pay is on top, with corporate earnings on the bottom. The resulting value is very tiny, meaning that their income is not a big deal, they reason. Workers think in numbers, too. But the traction the workers see is quite different. They see an executive's bonus on top and their pay on the bottom. THAT fraction is top-heavy--an "improper fraction," as we learned in math class. Such imbalance was also improper from a moral standpoint.

Alienate the workers through continual demands for one-sided concessions, and it's not just morals but also morale and productivity that deteriorate. Fairness at both ends of the pay scale is not just a legitimate moral end but also an essential element of sound leadership. Morality and morale are deeply interwoven in credible leadership. If leaders destroy the former, they will eventually destroy the latter.

Source: A Governor's Story, by Jennifer Granholm, p. 80 , Oct 1, 2005

Tax cuts are minor compared to talent recruitment

The notion that tax cuts are the magic elixir of business growth ignores the realities of contemporary business. As one of our interns remarked, "The old tax-cuts-only mind-set is SO 20th century." In 21st-century knowledge-based economies, tax rates play a minor role in business location decisions. For the kinds of advanced-manufacturing, high-tech business we were recruiting, TALENT is what matters. Quality of life, culture, and the "coolness" factor of host cities are also key to those decisions. Companies need to recruit smart, ambitious innovators--people who want to live in cool cities with exciting things to do and great schools for their kids. And where do talented young employees and the cool cities that attract them come from? From public investments in schools, the arts, universities, and training--the very things we've been cutting for years under the mantra "Government doesn't create jobs. Only the private sector creates jobs." It's a half-truth we've swallowed whole for much too long.
Source: A Governor's Story, by Jennifer Granholm, p.124 , Oct 1, 2005

Carmaker government-run bankruptcies saved GM & Chrysler

When, on May 24, 2011, Chrysler announced that it was repaying the loans years ahead of schedule, the same Mitt Romney who'd used the pages of the "New York Times" to declare "Let Detroit Go Bankrupt" boldly sought to claim credit for the auto industry's turnaround. "Mitt Romney had the idea 1st," said Eric Fehrnstrom, a Romney spokesman. "You have to acknowledge that. He was advocating for a course of action that eventually the Obama administration adopted."

This was doubly wrong. In the first instance, without the governor's investment, which Romney condemned, there would have been no auto industry left to save. Second, it was the government's intervention and the high-speed bankruptcy orchestrated by the Treasury Department that saved GM and Chrysler. A traditional bankruptcy without the US government's participation would likely have meant liquidation and the loss of the backbone of American manufacturing.

Source: A Governor's Story, by Jennifer Granholm, p.256 , Oct 1, 2005

We pick winners & losers to compete against other states

Governors and politicians who constantly proclaim that "government should not pick winners and losers" are doing precisely that, and for good reason: Virtually every state is locked in head-to-head battle with other states for business sitting decisions. To survive such competition, state governments are forced to practice economic policy, whether they choose to admit it or not.
Source: A Governor's Story, by Jennifer Granholm, p.242 , Oct 1, 2005

Other governors on Corporations: Jennifer Granholm on other issues:
MI Gubernatorial:
Mark Schauer
Rick Snyder
MI Senatorial:
Debbie Stabenow
Gary Peters
Matt Wiedenhoeft
Terri Lynn Land

Gubernatorial Debates 2014:
AL: Bentley(R) vs.Griffith(D)
AR: Ross(D) vs.Hutchinson(R) vs.Griffin(R,Lt.Gov.)
AZ: Ducey(R) vs.DuVal(D) vs.Mealer(AE) vs.Gilbert(L) vs.Riggs(R)
CA: Brown(D) vs.Kashkari(R)
CO: Hickenlooper(D) vs.Beauprez(R) vs.Tancredo(R) vs.Hess(L)
CT: Malloy(D) vs.Foley(R) vs.Walker(R,Lt.Gov.)
FL: Scott(R) vs.Crist(D) vs.Snitker(L,Lt.Gov.)
GA: Deal(R) vs.Carter(D) vs.Hunt(L)
HI: Ige(D) vs.Aiona(R) vs.Abercrombie(D)
IA: Branstad(R) vs.Hatch(D) vs.Hoefling(R)
MA: Coakley(D) vs.Baker(R) &Polito(R,Lt.Gov.) vs.Grossman(D) vs.Berwick(D)
ME: LePage(R) vs.Michaud(D) vs.Cutler(I)
MI: Snyder(R) vs.Schauer(D)
NM: Martinez(R) vs.King(D)
NY: Cuomo(D) &Hochul(D,Lt.Gov.) vs.Astorino(R) vs.Hawkins(G) vs.Teachout(D)
OK: Fallin(R) vs.Dorman(D)
PA: Corbett(R) vs.Wolf(D) vs.Schwartz(D,lost primary) vs.Critz(D,Lt.Gov.,lost primary)
Up for re-election 2014:
AK-R: Sean Parnell
AL-R: Robert Bentley
CA-D: Jerry Brown
CO-D: John Hickenlooper
CT-D: Dan Malloy
FL-R: Rick Scott
GA-R: Nathan Deal
HI-D: Neil Abercrombie
IA-R: Terry Branstad
ID-R: Butch Otter
IL-D: Pat Quinn
KS-R: Sam Brownback
ME-R: Paul LePage
MI-R: Rick Snyder
MN-D: Mark Dayton
NH-D: Maggie Hassan
NM-R: Susana Martinez
NV-R: Brian Sandoval
NY-D: Andrew Cuomo
OH-R: John Kasich
OK-R: Mary Fallin
OR-D: John Kitzhaber
PA-R: Tom Corbett
SC-R: Nikki Haley
SD-R: Dennis Daugaard
TN-R: Bill Haslam
VT-D: Peter Shumlin
WI-R: Scott Walker
WY-R: Matt Mead

Term-Limited or Retiring 2014:
AR-D: Mike Beebe
AZ-R: Jan Brewer
MA-D: Deval Patrick
MD-D: Martin O'Malley
RI-I: Linc Chafee
TX-R: Rick Perry
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Election 2013:
New Jersey:
NJ-R: Chris Christie (won)
NJ-D: Barbara Buono (lost)
VA-R: Bob McDonnell(Retiring)
VA-R: Ken Cuccinelli (lost)
VA-D: Terry McAuliffe (won)

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Page last updated: Oct 07, 2014