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October 12, 2021

CEO threatens workers' jobs if Obama re-elected

A day after Joe Biden guffawed his way through a debate with Paul Ryan, America is one step closer to an election that’s effects will be far-reaching.

The business world, understandably, is on edge, either for what will happen should either candidate be named president or what it fears will happen should either candidate be named president.

Steve Wynn, for one, the casino honcho and owner of Wynn Resorts, has said the pending election has caused his employees to be “all filled with anxieties,” the subtext of which is not hard to see for the outspoken Conservative.

But while Wynn may hint at what an Obama re-election would mean for the employment status of his 20,000-odd workers, one CEO has come right out and threatened his employees if Mitt Romney is not voted in next month.

That CEO is David Siegel, whose name you don’t know but whose legacy you might.

*Bing: Obama’s platform vs. Romney’s platform

First, Siegel’s position. The boss of Westgate Resorts sent a mass email to his workers earlier this week, suggesting that if Barack Obama is re-named president he will have to lay off workers, downsize the company or worse – shut it down.

“If any new taxes are levied on me, or my company, as our current President plans, I will have no choice but to reduce the size of this company,” Siegel wrote in his chain email.

“Rather than grow this company I will be forced to cut back. This means fewer jobs, less benefits and certainly less opportunity for everyone.”

In the email, Siegel goes on to say his message isn’t to persuade voters to favour Romney, but it’s tough not to see it as anything else.

But now we get to who Siegel is, and just why his threat may be one of hypocrisy.

Far be it from us to criticize the wealthy, nor chastise their right to earn money and run a profitable business.

Yet Siegel, who notes that a supposed tax raise by the Obama administration might doom his business, is also the man behind Versailles, not the French royal chateau but the replica palace being built in Florida.

Siegel and his wife, as depicted in the documentary “The Queen of Versailles,” are busy building the second-largest home in the U.S., a 90,000 square foot monstrosity with nine kitchens, 30 bathrooms and two movie theatres.

Siegel, of course, is within his right to threaten layoffs if tax hikes force his business into the red, but how, exactly, is he to justify his company’s shortage of cash and the loss of jobs from a home larger than a 747 airplane hangar?

By Jason Buckland, MSN Money



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Gordon PowersGordon Powers

A long-time fund company executive, Gordon Powers now heads up the Affinity Group, a financial services consulting firm. Gordon was a personal finance columnist for the Globe & Mail for many years, has taught retirement planning...