Arizona Gov. Ducey to pull Nike incentives over Colin Kaepernick controversy

  • by:
  • Source: AZ GOP
  • 07/02/2019
Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey announced Tuesday that he is ordering the Arizona Commerce Authority to withdraw all financial incentives for Nike, who wants to build a manufacturing plant in Goodyear.

The Arizona Governor made the announcement in a series of tweets following a Wall Street Journal report that said former NFL player Colin Kaepernick urged Nike to pull a USA-themed sneaker, which featured a Betsy Ross flag. According to the report, Kaepernick and others found the shoe offensive.

"Nike has chosen not to release the Air Max 1 Quick Strike Fourth of July as it featured an old version of the American flag," Nike said in a statement to CNN Business Monday evening. 

Ducey tweeted that "today was supposed to be a good day in Arizona, with the announcement of a major Nike investment in Goodyear, AZ."

"And then this news broke yesterday afternoon. Words cannot express my disappointment at this terrible decision. I am embarrassed for Nike," Ducey added.  "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."

Ducey tweeted that "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"

A spokesperson for the Arizona Commerce Authority released the following statement to Arizona's Family: 

"At the Governor’s direction, we are withdrawing an up to $1 million grant from the Arizona Commerce Authority’ Competes Fund. Unlike other programs in statute that are eligible to any and all companies, including Nike — this is purely discretionary."

Gov. Ducey stated the state's economy is doing "just fine" without Nike and added Arizona doesn't need to "suck up to companies that 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." 

This news comes just after the Goodyear City Council unanimously approved the shoemaker's plan to open a multi-dollar manufacturing facility during a meeting on Monday night.
Gov. Ducey by Gage Skidmore is licensed under Creative Commons CC BY-SA 2.0

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