Corporations have been increasingly drawn into social and political issues in recent years but so far have remained relatively silent on at one of the most divisive: abortion.
With a few notable exceptions, business leaders have been not responded to controversial new abortion restrictions in Texas, especially compared to when Texas lawmakers advanced a restrictive voting rights bill this year.
But of course, abortion and voting rights carry different risks for speaking out. An earlier Trendspotters survey that FGH conducted this spring found engaged voters support corporate leaders speaking out on issues core to their business objectives, like getting their employees back to work in the pandemic. But they were less likely to support business leaders taking a stance on other social issues.
Corporate responses to the Texas law have been largely limited to the tech sector. First Lyft and then Uber offered to cover legal fees for drivers sued under the Texas law for helping women get to abortion clinics. The leaders of dating app companies Match and Bumble have set up funds to help Texans seeking an abortion. And some prominent Hollywood voices called for a boycott of business in the state.
And on the other side, John Gibson, the president of game maker Tripwire Interactive, said Saturday he was motivated by the voices in opposition to the law to speak out in support of Texas’ action. The Tweet sparked calls for a boycott and by Monday, Gibson was forced to step down.