There has been a “sea change” in House Republicans’ attitudes towards woke capital — or corporations embracing wokeness, Republican Study Committee Chairman Jim Banks (R-IN) said at an event on Tuesday.
Banks said at an event hosted by the Claremont Institute:
Though Republicans in Congress have come a long way over the last year, in the past two months especially, there’s been a sea change. More members of Congress, especially on the right than ever have woken up to the dangers of woke corporations. That is the crucial first step.
“So I’d like to thank Delta and Coca-Cola for their naked and idiotic partisanship,” he added.
After being pressured by black business executives, Delta and Coca-Cola, which are based in Georgia, came out in opposition to a Georgia state bill that set deadlines on mail-in ballot applications and required state identification for absentee ballots.
Banks also acknowledged that Republicans were slow to act on corporate wokeism.
“It’s been a long time coming, and for too long, Republicans – especially Republicans in leadership – have been silent on these discussions,” he said, noting that he considers himself part of leadership as well, as head of the conservative Republican Study Committee.
“It’s time to fight back more than we have ever fought back before,” he said. “We’re on the right track. Republican are recalibrating. Our leadership is getting this more than before…it takes pressure from you on our Republican leaders to get there.”
Banks said he believed corporations were championing leftist social issues because they think it will boost their profits or protect them from government regulation, or because their leaders see themselves as citizens of the world and their interests as decoupled from America’s interest.
Either way, he said, “Woke corporations behave the way that they do because it’s helpful. We fix their behavior when we make it not helpful.”
Banks said the RSC is focused on fighting woke capital, and will continue to call out their “rank hypocrisy” and highlight it through Congressional letters.
“Right now the RSC is working to arrange an in-person meeting with the CEO of Delta so he can explain to us exactly how Voter ID laws are racist,” he said.
“We’re tackling woke corporation legislatively too. Last week I joined [Rep.] Burgess Owen’s (R-UT) bill to codify President Trump’s executive order and ban critical race theory in federal agencies.”
He added that he has introduced a bill based on Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas’s opinion to roll back Big Tech’s expansive Section 230 protections. He added, “Yes, conservatives must be willing to explore antitrust legislation more than we ever have before.”
“These companies must understand that wokeness is divisive, immoral, and harms America. And even if they don’t care about America, if they keep pushing it, it will end up hurting them, too,” he said.