A top aide to U.S. President Barack Obama pushed back hard on Tuesday against an accusation that the president was anti-business, bluntly calling out Obama's critic by name.
I was amazed to see the critical comments George Buckley, chief executive and chairman of 3M, made in the Financial Times this week, when he dubbed the president as 'anti-business', Obama chief of staff William Daley wrote on the London-based newspaper's website.
Daley, the former JP Morgan Chase (JPM.N) executive brought into the White House in January to make it more business-friendly, said the president was committed to boosting the U.S. economy and making the country more competitive.
If there are rules that needlessly stifle job creation and economic growth, we will fix them, Daley said.
The 3M (MMM.N) boss slammed Obama in an FT interview in which he warned U.S. manufacturers could move to Canada or Mexico as a result of the president's Robin-Hood-esque instincts.
This criticism comes after Obama made a deliberate effort to reach out to the business community following sometimes tense relations during his first two years in office.
Obama has renegotiated a long-delayed free trade agreement with South Korea to improve its chances of becoming law in a development welcomed by big business, while promising to pursue stalled trade pacts with Colombia and Panama.
We are seeing positive signs as a result of these efforts. Two years ago our economy was in freefall. Today, it is growing, Daley said. There is plenty of work to do. But the stakes are too high to give credence to the kind of comments Mr Buckley made this week, or to believe those who would question Mr Obama's commitment to our economic recovery.
(Reporting by Alister Bull; Editing by Philip Barbara)