Patterico's Pontifications

7/12/2019

Update: Arizona Gov. Ducey Changes Course, Welcomes Nike

Filed under: General — Dana @ 8:51 am



[guest post by Dana]

Apparently, Gov. Ducey of Arizona decided that losing 500 new jobs wasn’t a hill worth dying on after all. Last week, Gov. Ducey announced that “Arizona’s economy is doing just fine without Nike” after Nike caved to Colin Kapernick and his complaints that Nike’s July 4th Betsy Ross flag kicks were associated with racism and slavery. The governor’s statement then :

…Instead of celebrating American history the week of our nation’s independence, Nike has apparently decided that Betsy Ross is unworthy, and has bowed to the current onslaught of political correctness and historical revisionism. It is a shameful retreat for the company. American businesses should be proud of our country’s history, not abandoning it. Nike has made its decision, and now we’re making ours. I’ve ordered the Arizona Commerce Authority to withdraw all financial incentive dollars under their discretion that the State was providing for the company to locate here…

What a difference a week and a half makes:

Nike announced today it is making a significant manufacturing investment in its U.S. innovation footprint by opening a new Nike Air Manufacturing Innovation (Air MI) facility in Goodyear, Arizona. This expansion is expected to generate more than 500 full-time jobs and result in an investment of at least $184 million.

Following Nike’s announcement, Gov. Ducey tweeted:

“This is good news for Arizona and for @GoodyearAZGov. 500 plus jobs. Over $184 million in capital investment. Arizona is open for business, and we welcome @Nike to our state,” he tweeted.

According to a report from ABC15 Arizona: “The Arizona Commerce Authority [said] that those financial incentives that were withdrawn will not be reinstated for Nike.”

Nike’s latest design? Gov. Ducey flip-flops.

(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)

–Dana

29 Responses to “Update: Arizona Gov. Ducey Changes Course, Welcomes Nike”

  1. Well, that was certainly a short-lived cause.

    Dana (bb0678)

  2. “The Arizona Commerce Authority [said] that those financial incentives that were withdrawn will not be reinstated for Nike.”

    So how did he reverse his decision?

    Sammy Finkelman (8b217f)

  3. Sammy, I was editing while you commented. I changed title to “changes course” because “reverses decision” didn’t set quite right. His original comments reflected that Nike was not welcome because of having sided with Kapernick. He withdrew the incentives, and he made his disagreement with their stand on the sneakers very clear. And now he is laying out the welcome mat. That is a significant change of course.

    Dana (bb0678)

  4. I’m sorry, Dana, but doesn’t

    According to a report from ABC15 Arizona: “The Arizona Commerce Authority [said] that those financial incentives that were withdrawn will not be reinstated for Nike.”

    mean that it was Nike who caved, not Ducey? Withdrawing the incentives was all he could do. He could not keep them out altogether. It would violate the Commerce Clause or something. All he seems to have given them is the glad hand.

    nk (dbc370)

  5. It’s a little confusing, nk, because FOX News is reporting:

    Under its agreement with Goodyear, Nike is to receive $2 million in incentives if it meets certain thresholds.

    The original agreement included this:

    The city will agree to waive up to nearly $1 million in plan review and permit fees, and reimburse Nike another $1 million for the jobs created.

    Dana (bb0678)

  6. And from Marketwatch:

    But Nike will still get more than $2 million in tax breaks from the city of Goodyear, where Nike said it will begin work on the facility later this year and begin making soles in 2020.

    Dana (bb0678)

  7. If it were Chicago, I would have guessed that the governor was deluged with angry calls from dozens of Aldermen and Ward Committeemen who were not going to get their envelopes, but I don’t know how things work in Arizona. 😉

    nk (dbc370)

  8. The answer is that the outrage was performative.

    Davethulhu (fab944)

  9. Like no one would notice?

    Dana (bb0678)

  10. For most people, and maybe politicians more than most, our social selves are probably our strongest selves.

    nk (dbc370)

  11. Expected from the Maverick state.

    mg (8cbc69)

  12. Arizona gets the jobs and the State doesn’t have to pay, so the Governor welcomed Nike. He should do that, shouldn’t he? I don’t want a leader who whines when he loses or gloats when he wins, but welcoming a new company seems like something he should do unless the company is immoral or bad.

    For those who think Nike was exposed as “un-American” for pulling the flag shoe and also think the Governor was standing up for the flag, then I certainly understand why they might think this makes the Governor look insincere.

    DRJ (15874d)

  13. I think Nike was un-American for putting the flag on a shoe in the first place. Also for putting it on a grossly over-priced shoe. Also for marketing the grossly over-priced shoe to young people who are not all that well off financially (to put it mildly).

    nk (dbc370)

  14. The answer is that the outrage was performative.

    But can we really characterize Gov. Ducey’s response as “outrage”? My understanding of the matter is that Nike made their decision to recall the shoe, and the governor calmly responded that based upon the company’s decision he didn’t see why Arizona should extend to them special tax deals. That doesn’t strike me as “outrage”; it strikes me as a reasoned response to a decision that the governor thinks is insulting to the people of his state. Even if you believe that Gov. Ducey is acting disingenuously here, the end result is that special tax breaks for a wealthy large company — which I have always believed is horrible policy — have been withdrawn, which to me seems like a most excellent outcome.

    The real interesting story here, I believe, pertains to Nike’s response. Despite losing the tax advantage, despite the criticism that they received from Arizonans and people nationwide, despite Democrat governors in bordering states inviting Nike to locate there, the company went ahead with their plans in the Grand Canyon State. This suggests to me that Nike knows that pulling the shoe was a PR disaster for them, they are likely hearing it from their marketing and sales teams, and they want to put this matter behind them as quickly as possible. That’s the part of the story that most intrigues me. Hopefully we’ll get some anonymous Nike executives leaking to reporters some of the discussions that went on in the aftermath of this fiasco.

    JVW (54fd0b)

  15. Then it was just grandstanding. If my governor is going to jump into the mix, then I’d rather he thoughtfully explain that the need for jobs to employ Arizonans outweighs a novelty tennis shoe, and maybe suggest that if people are offended by it, they don’t purchase the shoe and boycott Nike themselves. Choose a lane and stay in it.

    Dana (bb0678)

  16. JVW,

    I think that pulling the shoes and Ducey’s grandstanding were both disasters for each party. But I think that since Ducey is welcoming them, there will be fall out. What do you think?

    Dana (bb0678)

  17. It’s a little confusing…

    Most of the confusion can be resolved when one realizes that Ducey isn’t the Mayor of Goodyear.

    I am confused over the flip-flop joke though.

    BuDuh (c80561)

  18. I went back and read Gov. Ducey’s full statement. Yeah, I can see where he might have pushed the envelope a little bit too much in terms of expressing his “disappointment” and his statement would have been better without this penultimate pragraph:

    Arizona’s economy is doing just fine without Nike. We don’t need to suck up to companies that consciously denigrate our nation’s history.

    But that said, I still don’t see where he says that Nike is no longer welcome in Arizona or asks them to consider going elsewhere. He made the understandable decision to withdraw special tax arrangements the company had been offered, and that to me is prudent and represents just about as far as he could have taken the matter. So yeah, I agree he grandstanded a little bit with this, but at the same time I find his message to be mostly consistent. Now here’s hoping that Arizona changes their policy on offering any company special tax incentives to relocate there.

    JVW (54fd0b)

  19. I think the focus should be on California’s grandstander, Newsom, and his failed attempt to woo nike to the Golden State.
    .

    BuDuh (c80561)

  20. So, the Never trumpers are always in favor of Corporations ’cause only money matters. Is that the moral?

    rcocean (1a839e)

  21. It wasn’t simply Ducey withdrawing the incentive. He went on to greatly criticize Nike, to the point of saying that the state of Arizona didn’t need their business or their jobs or their money: “Arizona’s economy is doing just fine without Nike”. To me, that’s more than just a little bit of grandstanding.

    Dana (bb0678)

  22. It wasn’t simply Ducey withdrawing the incentive. He went on to greatly criticize Nike, to the point of saying that the state of Arizona didn’t need their business or their jobs or their money: “Arizona’s economy is doing just fine without Nike”. To me, that’s more than just a little bit of grandstanding.

    So he shouldn’t have criticized Nike?

    rcocean (1a839e)

  23. I didn’t say that, rcocean.

    Dana (bb0678)

  24. @ nk,

    I think Nike was un-American for putting the flag on a shoe in the first place. Also for putting it on a grossly over-priced shoe. Also for marketing the grossly over-priced shoe to young people who are not all that well off financially (to put it mildly.

    Does this extend to any and all companies marketing their own version of Betsy Ross flag sneaks? Because I’m seeing a number of them on the market now.

    Dana (bb0678)

  25. Does this extend to any and all companies marketing their own version of Betsy Ross flag sneaks?

    Yes. The American flag, even an old from when there were only 13 states, does not belong on footwear.

    nk (dbc370)

  26. …or women’s bathing suits!

    Dana (bb0678)

  27. Or women’s bathing suits. We would need them to take it off immediately and hang it properly on a flagstaff.

    nk (dbc370)

  28. Heh. But of course! In the name of patriotism…

    Dana (bb0678)

  29. At first I was really disappointed in him. Glad to hear he still revoked the incentives. I suppose Nike threatened suit.

    Patricia (3363ec)


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