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Political business

AS AMERICA’S presidential election approaches the country’s business class is in its weakest political position for decades. Twenty years ago both parties competed to be the most pro-business. Today they compete to denounce the malefactors of great wealth. The most startling change is that business has lost control of its ancestral party, the Republicans. Donald Trump may well embody many an American business type: somebody who inherits a fortune and goes on to make it even bigger. But he has taken over the Republican Party by channelling blue-collar anger against all elites.

Mr Trump has trashed free trade, liberal immigration rules and other corporate non-negotiables. Big companies have shied away from donating to his campaign. Meg Whitman, the boss of Hewlett Packard Enterprise, has called him “reckless and uninformed”. Tom Donohue, head of the United States Chamber of Commerce, has described his policies as “pretty sort of stupid”.

All this has driven lots of business people to cross the political aisle: an Ipsos poll shows that 53% of those earning $250,000 or more (the top 5% of households) plan to vote for Hillary Clinton,…Continue reading

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