Westgate CEO David Siegel threatens layoffs if Obama is re-elected
The man who takes credit for getting George W. Bush elected as president is now making efforts to see that Republican candidate Mitt Romney makes it into the Oval Office, too.
David Siegel, the multi-millionaire founder and CEO of Westgate Resorts, sent out an e-mail yesterday to more than 7,000 of his employees threatening layoffs if President Barack Obama is re-elected.
The letter reads in the beginning: “The economy doesn’t currently pose a threat to your job. What does threaten your job however, is another 4 years of the same presidential administration.”
Right after, Siegel reassures his employees that his intention isn’t to force them to vote one way or the other.
“Of course, as your employer, I can’t tell you whom to vote for, and I certainly wouldn’t interfere with your right to vote for whomever you choose.”
But then later in his letter, he sends a thinly-veiled message:
So where am I going with all this? It’s quite simple. If any new taxies are levied on me, or my company, as our current President plans, I will have no choice but to reduce the size of the company. Rather than grow this company, I will be forced to cut back. This means fewer jobs, less benefits and certainly less opportunity for everyone.
So, when you make your decision to vote, ask yourself, which candidate understands the economics of business ownership and who doesn’t? Whose policies will endanger your job? Answer those questions and you should know who might be the one capable of protecting and saving your job.
Gawker posted an update to the story earlier today addressing suspicions that the letter was fake because it bears similarities to a chain letter that made its way around the Internet during the 2008 election season. The website reached out to Siegel, who confirmed that his letter is real and said that he used the chain letter as a guideline.
“I changed it [to fit my circumstances],” he said. “It speaks the truth and gives [employees] something to think about when they go to the polls.”
He also added that the threats of job layoffs are real.
Siegel is the head of Westgate Resorts, “one of the largest resort developers in the world.” He and his wife were the stars of the recent documentary The Queen of Versailles, which follows him as he set out to build the largest house in the United States. The construction of the 90,000 square foot, $75 million palace was suspended in 2009 after the recession hit.
To read the full letter, click here.
Follow Ugonna on Twitter at @ugonnaokpalaoka.