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Business Roundtable (BRT) is an association of chief executive officers of leading U.S. companies working to promote sound public policy and a thriving U.S. economy.

Three CEOs: End political gridlock, uncertainty

Sep 26, 2012
Carter Wood

The Clinton Global initiative featured a discussion in Toronto this week with three Business Roundtable-member CEOs. Their message: The uncertainty that results from political gridlock is damaging the recovery.

Participating  in the panel were Lloyd Blankfein, Chairman & CEO, Goldman Sachs Group; John T. Chambers, Chairman and CEO, Cisco Systems, Inc.; and Andrew Liveris, Chairman & CEO, Dow Chemical Company, who is also a BRT vice chairman. Fareed Zakaria of CNN Fareed Zakaria of CNN moderated.

From The Daily Beast, "Lloyd Blankfein on Wall St. ‘Disappointment’ With Obama":

  • The difference between a President Romney or Obama will not matter as much as whether or not moderates from both sides of the aisle are able to strike compromises that benefit the economy, Liveris said. Many of America’s problems are “self-inflicted,” Blankfein said, and coming to an agreement on one of them, such as a deal to cut the national debt, could solve a large number of smaller problems.
  •  Blankfein added that the time for the kind of gamesmanship that brought America to the brink of default as partisans squabbled over the debt ceiling in the summer of 2011 has passed. “People who have been pouting and holding their breath aren’t going to want to do that for four more years,” Blankfein said. 
  • "I think we must do better in the U.S.,” said Chambers, whose company has been called to congressional hearings to answer questions about how its products may aid Internet censorship in China. “I think we have a country that dreams well. I think we have to do better in execution."

More ...

Los Angeles Times, "Goldman Sachs' Lloyd Blankfein sounds alarm over 'fiscal cliff'"

Wall Street Journal (blog), "Goldman's Blankfein: 'Gotcha' Culture Detrimental to Growth"

Fox Business, "Goldman CEO: 'Gotcha' Culture Detrimental to Growth"

MarketWatch, "Goldman CEO Blankfein: fiscal cliff puts dollar’s reserve currency status at risk "