Target: Arthur Allen, CEO of ASG Software Solutions
Goal: Immediately cease intimidating workers over voting decisions
Arthur Allen, CEO of international software company ASG Software Solutions, has become the most recent public figure to try and sway voters. Allen sent out a mass email to all of his employees, not just urging them to vote for Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney, but to donate $2,500 per person to his campaign. Allen’s email suggested that if Romney is not elected then there would be large-scale layoffs at ASG and that those who did not donate would only have themselves to blame.
ASG employs a great number of people and generates millions of dollars every year. Under Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s proposed tax plan, millionaires would receive an $87,000 tax break. Arthur Allen is a millionaire. Given these facts, Allen’s motivations for the email are not hard to understand.
ASG employees are free to vote for whoever they like; whether it is for Romney or Obama. Who they cast their vote for is their own choice, Arthur Allen has no place in that decision. What he has done is extortion—telling his employees to vote for his man, donate to his man, or potentially lose their jobs. What he has done is wrong, illegal and un-American.
Allen is perfectly entitled to discuss the election with whomever he pleases, and to vote and contribute to whatever politicians and parties he likes, but to threaten his employees is inexcusable. All American citizens have the right to vote and they have the right to vote without fear of reprisal. Arthur Allen violated these rights when he sent that email out; let him know that this transgression will not stand.
Dear Mr. Allen,
Very soon millions of people will be voting for the next President of the United States. Most of the votes will go either to the incumbent, President Barack Obama, or the Republican candidate, Mitt Romney. You have made it no secret that you support Mr. Romney. That is fine, you are an American and free to vote for any candidate you please. However, the email that you sent to all of your employees at ASG Software Solutions urging them to vote and donate to the Romney/Ryan campaign at risk of their jobs, is utterly unacceptable.
It is not wrong for you to discuss the election with others, or to tell them why you believe they should cast their vote for Mitt Romney. It is not even wrong for you to tell your workers that you support Romney and believe that they should do the same.
However, your threat to their ongoing employment cannot be tolerated in a democracy. This is the United States of America; all citizens are free to vote for any candidate. Gone are the days when voter extortion was tolerated—and that is exactly what this is. You simply cannot threaten people’s jobs, telling them that if downsizing does occur in the event that Mr. Romney is not elected to the office of President, then they only have themselves to blame.
I hope you see the error of your ways, Mr. Allen. The email you sent out violated the American right to vote without fear. Feel free to donate to any politicians, to vote for any politicians, and let your support be known, but do not try and forcibly sway the votes of other citizens; it simply is not the American way.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: asg.com