Chris Hayes: Software firm CEO asked employees to vote for Romney

By Arturo Garcia
Sunday, October 14, 2012 12:10 EDT
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A Florida software firm CEO emailed his employees suggesting their jobs would be more secure if they voted for Mitt Romney for president, Chris Hayes reported on Up With Chris Hayes Sunday.

According to Hayes, Arthur L. Allen, head of ASG Software Solutions, emailed his company’s employees Sept. 30 saying the company’s chances of remaining independent if President Barack Obama is reelected would be slim to none.

“If we fail as a nation to make the right choice on November 6 and we lose our independence as a company, I don’t want to hear any complaints regarding the fallout that may come,” Allen said. “I am asking you to give us one more chance to stay independent by voting in a new President and administration on November 6th. Even then, we still might not be able to remain independent, but it will at least give us a chance. If we don’t, that chance goes away.”

Federal law bars employers from making threats against employees for voting for the “wrong” candidate.

One of Hayes’ panelists, Bloomberg.com writer Josh Barro, challenged him when he described the message as coercive.

“What do you want to do about it?” Barro said. “I have a right to say to you, ‘I think you should vote this way, and if you don’t vote this way, I think terrible things are gonna happen.’ That guy has a right to say it to his employees, too.”

Hayes countered that Allen is in a position to make those “terrible things” happen.

“You can tell me, ‘If Barack Obama’s re-elected, it’s gonna be terrible for MSNBC and your show is gonna go off the air,’” Hayes said. “But you’re not actually my boss, who’s gonna make the programming.”

Hayes’ report on Allen’s message to his employees, aired Sunday on MSNBC, can be seen below:

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Arturo Garcia
Arturo Garcia
Arturo R. García is the managing editor at Racialicious.com. He is based in San Diego, California and has written for both print and broadcast media, including contributions to GlobalComment.com, The Root and Comment Is Free. Follow him on Twitter at @ABoyNamedArt
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