OPINION: This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion
It appears that Senate Minority Leader and Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell has found his spine.
In response to the many corporations who have been fighting against Georgia’s new election security laws the senator warned them to mind their own business, Yahoo News reported.
U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell lashed out at corporate America on Monday, warning CEOs to stay out of the debate over a new voting law in Georgia that has been criticized as restricting votes among minorities and the poor.
In a sign of a growing rift in the decades-old alliance between the conservative party and U.S. corporations, McConnell said: “My advice to the corporate CEOs of America is to stay out of politics. Don’t pick sides in these big fights.”
McConnell warned companies there could be risks for turning on the party, but he did not elaborate.
“Corporations will invite serious consequences if they become a vehicle for far-left mobs to hijack our country from outside the constitutional order,” he warned at a press conference in Kentucky on Monday.
“I found it completely discouraging to find a bunch of corporate CEOs getting in the middle of politics,” he said.
One of the corporations he was referring to, Major League Baseball, moved its annual All-Star Game from Atlanta, Georgia in response to the new laws, but they were far from the only corporation to fight against the law.
On Monday another Republican, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, fought back as he penned a letter to the MLB Commissioner Robert Manfred telling him that he should surrender his Augusta golf club membership.
“As you are well aware, the exclusive members-only club is located in the State of Georgia,” wrote Rubio. “Last week, you “decided that the best way to demonstrate our values as a sport is by relocating this year’s All-Star Game,” he said.
“It is a decision that will have a bigger impact on countless small and minority-owned businesses in and around Atlanta than the new election law ever will. And one that reeks of hypocrisy,” he said.
But the MLB was not the only corporation to fight against the Georgia election laws and those like it.
Coca-Cola Co-Chief Executive James Quincey said “I want to be crystal clear. The Coca-Cola Company does not support this legislation, as it makes it harder for people to vote, not easier.”
Delta Airlines CEO Ed Bastian said, “I need to make it crystal clear that the final bill is unacceptable and does not match Delta’s values.”
Another airline, American Airlines, and Dell computers spoke against a similar law that was passed by the Texas Senate.
“Earlier this morning, the Texas State Senate passed legislation with provisions that limit voting access,” it said. “To make American’s stance clear: We are strongly opposed to this bill and others like it.”
Michael Dell, The CEO of Dell Technologies said “Free, fair, equitable access to voting is the foundation of American democracy. Those rights — especially for women, communities of color — have been hard-earned. Governments should ensure citizens have their voices heard. HB6 does the opposite, and we are opposed to it.”
Southwest Airlines declined to comment on the specific legislation but did say “In our view, the right to vote is foundational to our democracy and a right coveted by all. We believe every voter should have a fair opportunity to let their voice be heard.”
But these corporations are not talking about similar laws, like the laws in New York.
Georgia Governor Brian Kemp said that New York has more restrictive voting laws than Georgia does. “It’s easier to vote in Georgia than it is in New York,” he said.
“In New York, they have 10 days of early voting. In Georgia we have a minimum of 17, with two additional Sundays that are optional for all counties in our state,” he said at a press conference on Saturday.
“In New York, you have to have an excuse to vote by absentee. In Georgia, you can vote by absentee for any reason, and you can do it securely,” he said.