Governor on Governor War.. for Jobs.

I find it amusing to see the articles and editorials attacking the Texas governor Rick Perry for his frequent trips (usually to more Northern states) to recruit businesses to Texas.

The most recent trip to Maryland has been lambasted by their governor and local press for visiting the Baretta USA factory in Accokeek, Maryland.  Baretta USA has expressed interest after the Maryland governor signed one of the toughest gun control laws in May.  I have read other reports with anonymous comments from Baretta USA executives stating “Why should we manufacture guns in a state where the residents can’t buy the weapons they produce?”  This sounds catchy, but I believe cost of doing business in Texas would be much cheaper (Energy or production, land costs, taxes, etc..)

After passage of the Maryland bill the company released this statement:

“..(company was) deeply concerned about Governor O’Malley’s effort this year to impose broad new restrictions on the rights of Maryland citizens to buy firearms, as well as on the types of firearms and firearm magazines they can acquire.”

While I agree the timing seemed suspect to Maryland after the Washington Navy Yard shooting, its not as if Baretta stopped manufacturing firearms, or that business did not continue.

In fact Gov Perry (and his office) offered this in response:

“Listen, there’s always anti-gun individuals…”

“The fact is, I’m a pro-Second Amendment guy.  Texas is a pro-Second Amendment state.  Baretta has been a great manufacturer in Maryland and they feel not only under-appreciated, they feel under attack.”

“Anytime a company is potentially interested in Texas, the governor likes to reach out with them personally.”

I would have to agree with that.  Isn’t that part of his responsibility as governor.. to promote his state? (Like Alabama and South Carolina have done with Mercedes, Honda, BMW and Boeing?) Wouldn’t Texas voters find Perry at fault if he didn’t try to bring jobs to the state?

In they end, Baretta USA has said they have no plans to leave Maryland, but they are open to expanding operations in another state.

They Maryland governors response can be seen in an OP-ED published today titled “Texas fails compared with Maryland economy” Apparently the governors debating on Crossfire last night didn’t get out her points..

She repeatedly talks about how Texas is only making minimum wage jobs (ignoring the lower cost of living in Texas and typically they are starter jobs) yet I don’t see how this plays in the Baretta expansion debate.  Baretta must compete globally and they are looking to make a USA product at a competitive price for the US market.  They feel underappreciated in Maryland and Texas can provide educated workers and a lower cost of production. I believe her attacks would be less if she wasn’t so afraid of losing a great employer for her state.

Perry has been successful in similar campaigns luring Caterpillar, Ebay and Google to the state for some of their expansion.  While that didn’t make Illinois of California governors happy, I say so what.  If you don’t like it feel free to compete. It is a free market and level playing field here in the States.

If Baretta USA does come to Texas, I might be one of the first to order their 9mm.


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