It’s high time to move on
For decades, the Republican party and Corporate America enjoyed a “help me and help yourself” relationship. But the ties showed visible signs of crack after the January 6th insurrection and devolved into a fracture after Georgia Governor Brian Kemp signed the controversial voting bill into law.
As the simmering tension between the Republicans and Corporate America edges closer to the point of no return, the US political landscape is staring hard into the precipice with no option but to reconstruct.
The alarm bells rang the loudest inside Corporate boardrooms when the pro-business, committed free trade, anti-regulation party embraced populism and protectionism under Donald Trump. Under a single presidential term, the GOP went from upholding global security to questioning the motivation to tighten internal security.
Though the party’s evolution as a severe threat to Broadway performers may lull some into thinking that Republicans broadsides against CEOs as performative rather than substantive, the Republicans have plenty of seasoned reasoning to continue their current direction.
Mitch McConnell transitioned from asking all Americans “to stand up and unite in defense of the freedom to organize around the causes we believe” in 2012 to warning corporations of “consequences” for political opinion in 2021.
McConnell may have backpedaled on his warning, but that has no bearing on his revisionist thought process. McConnell is not a hypocrite; he evolves faster than others because he understands political spending like no one else can.
Election spending in the United States more than doubled from $6 billion in 2016 to more than $14 billion in 2020. The staggering increase buried another startling fact, that large individual donations and political action committees, a code name for corporate spending, declined by 11.24%. But small-dollar donors covered for more than half the decline.
Large individual donations remain the single most influential factor in US political spending, but they are not as powerful as they were in 2016. Now layer on top of this, the GOP has already delivered the single most significant promise they made to Corporate America, Tax cuts. How much lower can you go from a 21% corporate tax rate — not a cent, with $27 trillion in debt and counting.
Republicans delivered a 14% windfall for corporate America, bringing together an unpackable pack of senators, and in return, corporations slam a bill that secures the future of Republican candidates. The furor is palpable. When the media cried ‘retaliation’ as Georgia lawmakers tried to kill the tax break offered to Delta Airlines, House leader David Ralston poured his heart out and said, “You don’t feed a dog that bites your hand. You got to keep that in mind sometimes.”
Corporate America turned its backs on the GOP after the party poured its heart and soul towards their welfare. Nothing matters more than an election win for the GOP, and nothing matters more than bottom-line profits for corporations.
As America steams towards a multi-ethnic majority society, GOP’s vision to win by turning out minority vote and stripping out majority vote does not align with the corporate priority to win as many customers as possible. White children are now a minority of Americans under the age of 17.
After delivering the tax cuts, the Republican party has nothing to offer to corporate America. And the GOP is not as dependent on corporate America as it once was.
Small-dollar donations fueled Donald Trump’s billion-dollar 2020 campaign. Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene was kicked out of congressional committees for her incendiary remarks but raised $3.2 million in the first quarter. Josh Hawley and his raised fist may have left a bad after taste for many corporations that supported him in the past, which did nothing to reduce the $1.5 million Hawley raised from 28,000 donors in just the first two months of this year.
Corporate America wants to protect the bottom line by staying with the majority, while the GOP wants to protect its future by fighting for the future minority. Neither partner is dependent on the other to move forward.
And a divorce due to irreconcilable differences seems inevitable.