Oct 23, 2019

Chamber of Commerce head acknowledges shortcomings of capitalism in speech

Photo: U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Suzanne Clark, president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, announced Project GO (Growth, Opportunity & Innovation) in a speech Tuesday that continued the trend of business leaders acknowledging shortcomings in capitalism.

What she's saying: Clark focused on "the businesses role in solving some of the most urgent socio-economic challenges of our day ... and the important supporting role of government."

  • "The fundamental challenge we face today is to preserve the ability of our nation’s companies, to grow, innovate, and drive prosperity under a system of free and fair capitalism, while also acknowledging and addressing the shortcomings in the system."
  • "There are better answers than sweeping government mandates. ... [N]either business nor government can solve these issues alone."

Clark pointed to "growing diversity on corporate boards —not through quotas or arbitrary mandates — but through disclosure and dialogue."

Go deeper: CEOs are America's new politicians

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Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

California’s unprecedented law requiring all public companies headquartered there to have at least one female board member by 2020 is drawing lawsuits.

Why it matters: Pressure to diversify corporate boards has historically come from shareholders and special interest groups. With California's law poised to take effect — and at least three states weighing similar legislation — critics are raising the question of government overreach.

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Once a critic, Chamber of Commerce now backs Paris Climate Agreement

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

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CEOs' allergy to geopolitics

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

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Why it matters: Corporate America continues to do business with the Saudi crown prince, Mohammad bin Salman, who allegedly oversaw the beheading of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, and to court business in places like China and Turkey.

Go deeperArrowNov 12, 2019