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ANALYSIS: Big Businesses Are Fleeing Liberal Cities For Conservative Strongholds

REUTERS/David Ryder

Sarah Weaver Staff Writer
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Massive companies are fleeing liberal cities and states. Tired of skyrocketing tax rates, COVID-19 protocols, crime and homelessness, they’re moving to the most conservative states in the Union.

Even the “wokest” of companies are forced to admit that left-wing policies in major cities are taking their toll on business profits, and even endangering their own employees. According to a poll of nearly 700 CEOs from every state, California, New York, and Illinois are considered the worst states for business. The three best states? Texas, Florida, and Tennessee.

“You’re…seeing firsthand the challenges facing our communities – personal safety, racism, lack of access to healthcare, a growing mental health crisis, rising drug use, and more,” Debbie Stroud and Denise Nelsen, senior vice presidents of U.S. operations at Starbucks said in a public statement to employees this July.

Starbucks announced that month it would be closing 16 stores, primarily in big liberal cities, amid rising crime, homelessness and drug use in the areas. The coffee company announced it was closing six stores in Seattle, six stores in Los Angeles, two in Portland, one in Washington, D.C., and one in Philadelphia.

“We read every incident report you file – it’s a lot,” Stroud and Nelson said in the company statement.

A report released by the Hoover Institute at Stanford University found that the rate of businesses relocating out of California had doubled in the previous six months. “California is notorious for imposing excessive real estate taxes while disregarding the financial strain placed upon businesses and homeowners,” the report noted. Another Hoover Institute report released in November 2021 noted that San Francisco, California, was more dangerous than 98% of American cities.

Tesla, the electric car company, headquartered in Pal Alto, California, announced it was moving to Austin, Texas, in October 2021. The company’s founder and CEO Elon Musk had previously sparred with the California state government over COVID-19 protocols in May 2020. California wouldn’t allow Tesla to open their factory after closing it in March at the start of the pandemic. Musk threatened a lawsuit and a move to Texas. (RELATED: ‘F*ck Elon Musk’: Tesla CEO Says ‘Message Received’ After California Assemblywoman Curses Him Out)

Musk also recognized the limited economic capacity of the state in a shareholder meeting saying there is a “limit to how big you can scale in the Bay area.”

“It’s tough for people to afford houses,” Musk said. “There’s a limit to how big you can scale in the Bay Area.”

The hedge fund firm Citadel announced in June they were moving from crime-ridden Chicago to Miami, Florida. The company’s move came after the company’s CEO Ken Griffin sparred with Democratic Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker over rising crime rates and other issues.

“If people aren’t safe here, they’re not going to live here,” Griffin said in an interview with the Wall Street Journal. “I’ve had multiple colleagues mugged at gunpoint. I’ve had a colleague stabbed on the way to work. Countless issues of burglary. I mean, that’s a really difficult backdrop with which to draw talent to your city from.” (RELATED: Six Major US Cities Report Historic Increases In Violent Crime)

“Florida has increasingly become an attractive base for money managers as it does not have a state income tax,” the Financial Times reported, as Elliott Management, a $41 billion hedge fund, moved its headquarters from New York to Florida in October 2020.

Caterpillar announced recently it would move from the Chicago area to Irving, Texas.

“We believe it’s in the best strategic interest of the company to make this move, which supports Caterpillar’s strategy for profitable growth as we help our customers build a better, more sustainable world,” Caterpillar CEO Jim Umpleby said in the statement.

AECOM, a Fortune 500 company joined, “a parade of large California corporations relocating to Texas” in August 2021. (RELATED: California Is Single-Handedly Making The Supply Chain Crisis Even Worse)

“Dallas has emerged as a U.S. hub for corporate headquarters and a compelling corporate talent magnet, particularly among our peers and public companies in the engineering and consulting sectors,” the company said.

Jacobs Engineering Group, a real estate service company, CBRE Group, Toyota Motor Corp. and Occidental Petroleum Corp. have all made the move from California to Texas in the last few years, according to the LA Times.

The financial toll that the sweeping exodus of these companies will take on the areas they left will be massive. Maybe then liberal politicians will wake up to what their policies are actually doing to the areas they govern.