Capitol Fax.com - Your Illinois News Radar » *** UPDATED x1 - Oberhelman: Headlines misleading *** Actual Caterpillar CEO letter paints far different picture than media coverage
SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
CapitolFax.com
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
*** UPDATED x1 - Oberhelman: Headlines misleading *** Actual Caterpillar CEO letter paints far different picture than media coverage

Wednesday, Mar 30, 2011

*** UPDATE *** Caterpillar CEO Doug Oberhelman spoke publicly for the first time today about that now infamous letter he sent to Gov. Pat Quinn

The chief executive of Caterpillar Inc. again criticized the business climate in the heavy equipment maker’s home state of Illinois on Wednesday, but downplayed reports that it might leave.

“Legislators in Illinois have created an environment that is unfriendly to business and investment. At Caterpillar we want to help and lead a change in that climate,” said Douglas Oberhelman at a U.S. Chamber of Commerce event. […]

At the chamber event, Oberhelman said headlines suggesting Caterpillar might leave the state were misleading.

“That’s not really what I said,” he told the chamber. “I actually said I was looking forward to finding a way to invest more in Illinois and change the business climate. Illinois is our home.”

Notice that Oberhelman once again blames legislators, not the governor, for the problems. Also take note that he repeated his claim that he wants to find a way to invest more here, not less.

[ *** End Of Update *** ]

* I haven’t seen the now infamous letter from Caterpillar CEO Doug Oberhelman to Gov. Pat Quinn actually posted in its entirety So, here it is. Pay close attention to the third paragraph, which has received the least amount of media coverage…

Dear Governor Quinn:

Caterpillar has been proud to call Illinois home for over 75 years. Personally I grew up in Woodstock, Illinois, and aside from a few years out of the country for my work at Caterpillar, I have lived here my whole life. Before, I never really considered living anywhere else, and certainly never considered the possibility of Caterpillar relocating. But I have to admit, the policymakers in Springfield seem to make it harder by the day.

I’ve included just three of the several letters from Governors across the country that I have been receiving. They are welcoming Caterpillar to their states with open arms, and they make compelling arguments. I have been called, “cornered” in meetings and “wined and dined” - the heat is on.

You’ve always been honest with me, and that’s why I want you to know about these letters. I’m not sending them to you as a threat that Caterpillar is leaving Illinois. I want to stay here. And as our business grows, I’d like to invest more here - Illinois has always been the heart of Caterpillar. But as the leader of this business, I have to do what’s right for Caterpillar when making decisions about where to invest. The direction that this state is headed in is not favorable to business, and I’d like to work with you to change that. Frankly, we need to re-structure this State’s business from top to bottom. I think you know that.

This is a firm letter, no doubt, but it’s also quite respectful and even complimentary of the governor. What it clearly isn’t is a dire threat to move the company out of state anytime soon, or a blatant diss of Gov. Quinn.

Oberhelman seems to genuinely want to work with Quinn to find solutions to the state’s problems. The Cat CEO has taken some heat from the Left for grubbing for money or whatever other advantage he could get here, but that doesn’t appear justified when reading the complete letter.

* Also, if you’ve been wondering how the letter became public, it was cc’d to several politicians, including Congressman Aaron Schock, Senate GOP Leader Christine Radogno, House Republican Leader Tom Cross, Speaker Madigan, Senate President John Cullerton and Quinn’s chief of staff Jack Lavin. I’d bet any money that one of them leaked it. Caterpillar’s spokesman has said the letter was meant to be private.

* Meanwhile, Quinn is sticking with the Leftie rhetoric

For governors cutting education and health care and going after public-sector employees to balance budgets, here’s a message from Illinois Governor Pat Quinn: You’re wrong. Not mistaken, not misinformed.

“Just plain wrong,” said Quinn, 62, during a March 22 interview in his Chicago office. “I don’t buy into all these radical cuts in government as a way to make life better for ordinary, everyday people.” […]

Quinn says he has made plenty of unpleasant decisions, including raising the retirement age for public employees, putting new hires into a 401(k) retirement plan and altering the Medicaid system.

“I’m not going to get our state out of the hole that it’s in in terms of the economy by just severe cuts in education,” Quinn said. “Lay off teachers? What’s that all about? Is that going to help us?

“No.”

* Related…

* Lawmakers defend tax hike, express concern for CAT

* Editorial: Cat not leaving today, tomorrow, hopefully not ever, but Illinois should take nothing for granted

* Roskam: High taxes have consequences

* Caterpillar’s Alarm Bell For Illinois

* Could Caterpillar end up in metro Sioux City?

- Posted by Rich Miller        

16 Comments
  1. - cassandra - Wednesday, Mar 30, 11 @ 11:12 am:

    Putting new hires into a 401k retirement plan? Did I miss something?


  2. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Mar 30, 11 @ 11:44 am:

    I think that was a mistake on Bloomberg’s part.


  3. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Mar 30, 11 @ 11:47 am:

    Oberhelman’s letter is exceptional in in its serious, civil tone and in the balance he strikes in his role as CATs CEO and an Illinois corporate citizen.

    That’s not Jimmy John whining to the hometown newspaper. Here’s a major international corporate player looking to work it out with his state’s political establishment. Entirely appropriate and welcome.

    Many media outlets and politicians reaction to it were ignorant and hysterical. Based on nothing at all, too many stated categorically that “CAT threatens to leave state because of tax hike.”

    Very sad performance by a lot of folks who should practice a little more due diligence in their work. Until they can elevate their games, maybe they should sit this one out and leave it to the grownups.


  4. - vole - Wednesday, Mar 30, 11 @ 11:52 am:

    “Lay off teachers? What’s that all about?”

    Hundreds, perhaps thousands of teachers across the state receiving RIF notices are asking these questions.

    The Daily Herald article linked to in Rich’s post is very well written.


  5. - zatoichi - Wednesday, Mar 30, 11 @ 11:58 am:

    Seems like a pretty reasonable letter to me, particularly in comparison to all sky is falling statements. Cat has had facilities all over the world and in other states for quite some time. Oberhelman is offering assistance which should be listened to. You can claim he is looking out for Cat’s interests, which he should, but keeping a good business climate also touches Cat’s suppliers, all the associated businesses, and potential employees. Call it loyalty to his home state. Call it simply having some skin in the game. Let the pol’s debates go on and on. Letters like this are also an important part of the process. Nice move on his part.


  6. - wndycty - Wednesday, Mar 30, 11 @ 11:59 am:

    Lesson to Caterpillar, don’t cc other politicians if you would like the letter to remain private.


  7. - Beowulf - Wednesday, Mar 30, 11 @ 12:01 pm:

    When I first saw the letter from Caterpillar’s CEO to Governor Quinn, I did not automaticaly take it as a threat by Caterpillar to leave Illinois. They have too much invested in “bricks & mortar” here in Illinois to simply move out “lock, stock, & barrel” because of the negative governmental policies that Illinois has taken toward business. Instead, I read it to mean that in the future Caterpillar is “not likely” to build additional plants in Illinois or hire additional Illinois citizens. Caterpillar is being forced to look to build in other states. I think that most other readers of this letter probably also understood it to convey that meaning.

    ADM in Decatur (huge employer in Decatur)had also voiced this same concern two years ago. I am sure that their dismay of the Illinois business climate has increased greatly since then. However, Pat Quinn seems to have missed the point that Cat CEO Doug Oberhelman tried to graciously and tactfully make to Quinn. It seems that a “herd of buffalo” must first have to trample over Quinn and leave their hoof prints on his forehead before he realizes that “a stampede” is beginning. That is what is really scary about having Pat Quinn acting (and I do mean “acting”) as our governor!


  8. - OneMan - Wednesday, Mar 30, 11 @ 12:11 pm:

    Well governor I would argue it is worse to tell a school district they are going to get x, then give them y late…


  9. - Cincinnatus - Wednesday, Mar 30, 11 @ 12:29 pm:

    I gotta admit my ignorance here (insert joke here, gentle reader) since I haven’t followed Illinois politics too closely.

    During the election, many of the supporters of Our Boy Pat® and even some of his detractors seemed to make a number of observations that I am finding strange given his recent public statements. With the exception of his support of the troops, which I find to be commendable and consistent over his career, Quinn appears to me to be at best inconsistent in all manners of leadership, style, statement and indeed appears to govern as a traditional left liberal. Even Rich has begun to question Quinn’s tone and substance,

    “Meanwhile, Quinn is sticking with the Leftie rhetoric…”

    Honestly folks, especially those with long memories and personal experiences, have the burdens of the governorship changed this man or were the attributes we are now seeing always evident?

    No snark intended here, I am curious to hear your views.


  10. - CircularFiringSquad - Wednesday, Mar 30, 11 @ 1:03 pm:

    It is interesting the CAT Master’s letter is much saner than the GOPers react. We guess they feel bad for being exposed as madmen/women.

    Even though the Cat Master used Schock as a major campaign fund conduit and bankrolled Unes, he has too big an investment in IL to get too muts.

    Too many of his top executives live in IL and have zero interest Nebraska et al.
    The GOP panic attack was cute, but once again
    Fire,Aim,Ready


  11. - Edmond - Wednesday, Mar 30, 11 @ 2:10 pm:

    Think some are missing point. Yes, letter is respectful and civil. What is unmistaken is his point that Illinois government/business need to be remade top to bottom and he has to know that Quinn will never do that. Quinn is a old time union liberal and will never reform state government like the CEO is suggesting.


  12. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Mar 30, 11 @ 2:19 pm:

    Edmond, the letter speaks for itself.

    You’re inserting your own opinion and conclusions and attributing them to Oberhelman.

    There’s been a lot of that going on.


  13. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Mar 30, 11 @ 2:22 pm:

    ===he has to know that Quinn will never do that.===

    From the letter…

    ===Frankly, we need to re-structure this State’s business from top to bottom. I think you know that.===


  14. - hisgirlfriday - Wednesday, Mar 30, 11 @ 3:59 pm:

    The assumption that one cannot govern as a liberal and contribute to a favorable business climate is nonsense.

    CAT doesn’t benefit that much from crackpot conservatives sole economic strategy being cutting taxes as a stimulus plan if that leaves no money to address any needed government investments in infrastructure that will both use CAT equipment to fix our bridges and roads and improve the bridges and roads CAT uses to move its products around the country from its existing plants in Illinois.

    CAT doesn’t benefit from crackpot conservatives drastically cutting funding for education, especially higher education, when that means they’ll have less talented and knowledgable engineers and business people to help the innovation and administration of the company.

    Yes liberals also support unions, corporate America’s and CAT’s favorite boogeyman, but what about the conservatives and their blind support of Wall Street with opposing any and all regulation of the financial industry, an industry that can sink the global economy at any time bringing much pain and uncertainty to manufacturing companies like Caterpillar?


  15. - Barton Lorimor - Wednesday, Mar 30, 11 @ 4:41 pm:

    Vindication. Sweet, sweet vindication :)


  16. - working class - Wednesday, Mar 30, 11 @ 5:29 pm:

    To hisgirlfriday: You go girl!


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


* *** LIVE *** Session coverage
* Question of the day
* Madigan on GOP: "They don't wanna talk about their record because they don't have a record"
* Lottery sells tickets even after all prizes have been claimed
* It's just a bill
* This isn't about "family heritage"
* *** UPDATED x1 *** Because... Madigan!
* Don't believe everything you read
* Pritzker hopes to unload casino stake by December
* A Dock Walls, Jim Tobin gubernatorial ticket?
* Sun-Times makes "urgent appeal" for subscriptions, bashes Tribune
* *** UPDATED x1 *** "The family had a lot of buffers"
* Budget hype and budget facts
* Federal rules protecting net neutrality expire today! Support House Bill 4819
* *** UPDATED x1 - Brady: "It's not my firm" *** Rauner campaign paid Pat Brady's firm for consulting
* *** UPDATED x1 - Rauner responds *** Chuy Garcia endorses Madigan for another term as party chairman
* The going gets weirder with McCann's entry
* Why did Reinking have those guns?
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Today's edition of Capitol Fax (use all CAPS in password)
* Yesterday's stories

Support CapitolFax.com
Visit our advertisers...

...............

...............

...............

...............

...............

...............

...............
<


Loading


* Editorial: Senate's turn to step up for true ac.....
* Editorial: Senate's turn to step up for true ac.....
* Lawmakers want Quincy Legionnaires' report by F.....
* Illinois state senator joins gubernatorial race.....


* Car theft solved too late to prevent Waffle House tragedy
* Deadline near to submit Illinois bicentennial coin design
* Lawmakers want Quincy Legionnaires' report by Friday
* Waffle House slaying suspect arrested after massive manhunt
* The Latest: 4 homicide charges in Waffle House shooting
* Correction: Campus Free Speech-Lawsuit story
* Judge asked to reject pipeline protester's evidence request
* Illinois AG files harassment lawsuit against bus company
* APNewsBreak: Illinois' late fees skyrocket over past 3 years
* The Latest: Shooting suspect made claims about Taylor Swift

* Michael Madigan wins re-election as Democratic Party leader
* Champaign-area bus company faces harassment lawsuit
* Illinois' late fees skyrocket over past 3 years
* State paying bills, but not late-payment interest
* Legislators push Rauner for Quincy veterans home improvement plan
* Michael Madigan expected to win re-election as Democratic Party leader
* Statehouse bills would increase drivers' awareness of bike safety
* Proposal would let more voters try to cut property taxes
* Illinois Lottery sells tickets for instant games after top prizes are gone
* Government consolidation efforts gain traction in General Assembly

* Roskam lauds bill to limit IRS asset forfeiture
* AG Madigan sues bus firm for targeting Asians, Jews and more
* Esurance hikes auto rates again in Illinois as customers flee
* Aluminum drops most in 7 years after U.S. signals Russian sanctions relief
* With another $1 billion due, reality sets in at Sears


* Metra Electric Line schedule to change this week
* Lanes on I-55 will close this week for bridge repairs on Tollway
* Driver crashes into 2 buildings in West Elsdon
* Dear Abby: Can I trust man who admits to hiring hookers?
* Just call Northwestern U. ‘Hollywood Midwest’ after ‘A Starry Night’ bragfest
* Police: String of residential burglaries reported in Back of the Yards
* Horoscope for April 24, 2018
* Jose Abreu, Yoan Moncada have big nights to back Carson Fulmer in Sox’ 10-4 win
* United Airlines did not give CEO a bonus last year
* Rockets explode for 50-point quarter in 119-110 win over Timberwolves


* Michigan State kept ties to Aurora coach accused of sexual abuse
* Motive elusive after van driver kills 10 on Toronto sidewalk
* Senate to postpone confirmation hearing for Jackson to head Veterans Affairs, White House officials told
* White Sox offense comes to life with 10-4 victory over Mariners
* Bears honor Devin Hester and Matt Forte in retirement ceremony
* Waffle House shooting suspect arrested; father also could face charges, Nashville police say
* U46 board member who made controversial flag comment resigns to pursue social justice activism
* Man who caused fatal Aurora crash while street-racing sent to prison
* Memories of Cubs' World Series win in Cleveland will never fade
* White Sox pitcher Danny Farquhar faces tough odds in recovery from brain aneurysm, but hopeful signs exist


» April 20, 2018 - Full Show
» Madigan Elected For 6th Term As Democratic Party Chairman
» Illinois Case Argues Bullet Analysis Is ‘Basically A Guess’
» Mayor Rahm Emanuel Unveils Anti-Sexual Harassment With The Help Of A 'Friend' (Hint: David Schwimmer)
» Student Walkouts; Science And Business At Argonne; Back Pay For State Employees; Illinois Politics
» Illinois Legislators Have History Of Bringing Babies To Work
» How Parents Balance Privacy And Safety For Kids Online
» CPS Plays Matchmaker To Link Teachers With High-Need Schools
» Measure To Expand Online Sales Tax In Illinois Faces Hurdles
» At South Side Cemetery, A Gathering For Confederate Descendants – And Protesters


* Michael Madigan wins re-election as Democratic Party leader
* Champaign-area bus company faces harassment lawsuit
* E.J. Dionne: Where are the conservatives we need?
* Illinois' late fees skyrocket over past 3 years
* State paying bills, but not late-payment interest
* Legislators push Rauner for Quincy veterans home improvement plan
* Michael Madigan expected to win re-election as Democratic Party leader
* George Will: Gorsuch strikes blow against administrative state
* Statehouse bills would increase drivers' awareness of bike safety
* Proposal would let more voters try to cut property taxes


* Area Calendar 4/24/18
* Norman D. Smith
* Peggy Ann Huffine
* Alice Hunsinger
* Loretta Snyder Underwood
* Ann Karayiannis
* Illinois Lottery drawing for Monday, April 23
* Davenport superintendent Tate will retire in 2019
* After a year of struggle, Dove highlights bright spots of community support
* Semi crash on I-57 sends 2 to hospital, 1 with major injuries


* Spokesman: George HW Bush is eager to get well, go to Maine
* Girls track scoreboard: Monday, April 23 results
* Softball scoreboard: Monday, April 23 results
* Car theft solved too late to prevent Waffle House tragedy
* Boys volleyball: Lake County roundup

* Rep. Randy Hultgren recognizes Loyola men'...
* US Rep. Randy Hultgren visits McHenry's Pi...
* Are Illinois Congressmen safe in wake of D...
* It's official: If you prepaid your propert...
* A quick look at a few congressional races ...
* Underwood hopes winning primary formula ca...
* Group of Nearly 100 Iranians Stuck in Vien...
* Democrats aim to turn Obamacare into asset...
* Bustos pushes to make 'blue wave' happen i...
* House approves Curbelo, Hultgren bill prot...

* Senators Cling to a Fading Custom Trump's ......
* Sen. Durbin warns educators of risks of fo......
* County official: Anti-poverty services wou......
* Booker, Durbin, Krishnamoorthi Introduce H......
* Durbin, Duckworth demand accounting of All......

* Editorial: Up to the task...
* I'm a legislator and a mom. Tammy Duckwort......
* Tammy Duckworth is uniquely privileged, bu......
* Tammy Duckworth makes fertility after 50 l......
* Few mothers could do what Tammy Duckworth ......

* What doesn’t Governor Ducey understand?
* Red state teacher revolt moves to AZ.
* "Brass Heart" Restaurant Coming To Broadway & Clifton
* The Christian indie-rock star who broke up with God
* Let the pictures do the talking: Hank Willis Thomas deconstructs the ad game at the Block Museum
* Blank pages = blank minds, but will that sway anybody to subscribe?
* Here's how to make BellyQ chef Bill Kim’s excellent Korean pesto
* The Weekend In Chicago Rock
* The Week In Chicago Rock
* What is the future of online learning in higher education?


* IEMA Highlights Role of Volunteers in Disasters
* Governor Rauner activates State Emergency Operations Center in Springfield
* February Flooding Information
* IEMA Urges People to Prepare for Severe Weather
* Governor issues state disaster proclamation for flooding in Iroquois, Kankakee, Vermilion Counties

  
* Windows Phone is dead (for realsies) as Microsoft discontinues Skype and Yammer apps
* This smart sensing fabric is in everything from gaming gloves to shoes
* Huawei P20 Pro and P20 Lite get official price tags and a release date in India
* LG G7 ThinQ may have a notch, but new renders show headphone jack too
* Facebook makes its community guidelines public and introduces an appeals process
* Samsung may bring AR Emojis to video calls and it may not be a gimmick
* Deal: Buy Samsung Galaxy S9/S9+ and save up to $200

* After early work, elusive feat escapes Moncada
* Beck up from Triple-A as Gonzalez hits DL
* White Sox relish in runs revival to bust slump
* That was fun: White Sox defeat Mariners, 10-4
* White Sox Minor League Update: April 23, 2018
* Avi suffers hamstring strain; leaves game in 2nd
* White Sox relish in runs revival to bust slump


Main Menu
Home
Illinois
YouTube
Pundit rankings
Obama
Subscriber Content
Durbin
Burris
Blagojevich Trial
Advertising
Updated Posts
Polls

Archives
April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
December 2017
November 2017
October 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004

Blog*Spot Archives
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005

Syndication

RSS Feed 2.0
Comments RSS 2.0
WordPress




Hosted by MCS SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax Advertise Here Mobile Version Contact Rich Miller