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Politics

AZ to Nike: Tax Breaks Rescinded — Update: Or Not

"Nike has made its decision," Doug Ducey said. "And now we're making ours."

Nate Jackson · Jul. 3, 2019

Update, July 12: LOL just kidding. That was the message from Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey one week after we published the article below. “This [incoming Nike factory in Goodyear, Arizona] 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.”

We suppose money talks.


If Nike wants to show its true anti-American colors, bowing before the social-justice-warrior sentiments of Colin Kaepernick, Arizona wants nothing to do with Nike. So said the state’s Republican governor, Doug Ducey, Tuesday after the athletic-wear company ditched its Betsy Ross shoes due to Kaepernick’s complaint.

Nike had announced a $184 million investment in a facility and 500 jobs in Goodyear, Arizona. According to The Arizona Republic, the city had agreed to “waive up to nearly $1 million in plan review and permit fees, and reimburse Nike another $1 million for the jobs created.” But Ducey rolled up the welcome mat in the wake of Nike’s flag decision. “Today was supposed to be a good day in Arizona, with the announcement of a major [Nike] investment in Goodyear,” Ducey said. “And then this news broke.”

He continued:

Words cannot express my disappointment at this terrible decision. I am embarrassed for Nike. Nike is an iconic American brand and American company. This country, our system of government and free enterprise have allowed them to prosper and flourish. 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. 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. And finally, it shouldn’t take a controversy over a shoe for our kids to know who Betsy Ross is. A founding mother. Her story should be taught in all American schools. In the meantime, it’s worth googling her.

Ducey wants to make Nike face economic consequences for its anti-free speech and anti-American decisions, but we wish such cronyism wasn’t a feature in every state in the first place. Favored tax status doesn’t often exist for small businesses, and it shouldn’t exist for multibillion-dollar corporate behemoths like Nike.

Unfortunately, that’s not going to change. Neighboring governors in New Mexico and California immediately jumped at the chance to woo Nike. “Hey Nike, let’s talk,” said New Mexico’s Michelle Lujan Grisham. “We’re just a quick jaunt over the border,” chimed in California’s Gavin Newsom, who inexplicably added that Nike represents “the best of American values.” Tell that to the American Patriots who’ve given their all to defend the nation and the flag that Nike apparently despises.

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