Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, Apple
CEO Tim Cook and Google CEO Sundar Pichai are among the 14 business
leaders calling on Texas Gov. Greg Abbott to scrap bills targeting
the LGBT community.
According to The
Dallas Morning News, the CEOs made their case in a letter
dated May 27.
“As large employers in the state, we
are gravely concerned that any such legislation would deeply tarnish
Texas' reputation as open and friendly to businesses and family,”
they wrote. “Our ability to attract, recruit and retain top
talent, encourage new business relocations, expansions and
investment, and maintain our economic competitiveness would all be
“We strongly urge you and the Texas
Legislature not to further pursue legislation of this kind,” they
The letter was also signed by Amazon
CEO Jeff Wilke, IBM Chairman Ginni Rometty and Microsoft President
Brad Smith. Other companies represented include Dell, Hewlett
Packard, Cisco, Silicon Labs, Celanese Corp., GSD&M, Salesforce
and Gearbox Software.
The legislative session ends Tuesday,
but Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick, who controls the Senate, has
called legislation that would prohibit transgender people from using
the bathroom of their choice a must-pass measure. The issue came to
a head on Friday after House Speaker Joe Straus refused to consider
the bill and Patrick called on Abbott to keep lawmakers in Austin
until a compromise is reached.
Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick demands special session for transgender