Carly Fiorina: I have repeatedly asked Hillary Clinton to name an accomplishment
Hillary Clinton thinks she is entitled to your vote, I am working hard to earn it
Editor’s Note: Carly Fiorina is running for the Republican nomination for president of the United States. She was a candidate for the U.S. Senate in 2010 and CEO of Hewlett-Packard from 1999 to 2005. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.
The next president of the United States must have a track record of accomplishments and challenging the status quo. Throughout this campaign, I have repeatedly asked Hillary Clinton to name an accomplishment. She has yet to name one. Note: Flying is an activity, not an accomplishment.
Where Clinton has lied and evaded in response to questions, I have stood firmly on my track record of accomplishments. I have sought out every opportunity to answer questions from the media and the American people. I don’t lie about tough calls. I acknowledge them because that is what the American people deserve.
Clinton thinks she is entitled to your vote. I am working hard to earn it.
The Clinton Machine has decided to attack me by talking about my greatest accomplishment: shattering the glass ceiling to become the first female CEO of Hewlett-Packard, a Fortune 500 company.
I started my career filing and answering the phones as a secretary in a nine-person real estate firm. Being underestimated is nothing new for me. I don’t shy away from a challenge.
I am proud of what we were able to accomplish at Hewlett-Packard during the worst technology recession in 25 years. While other tech companies like Sun Microsystems and Gateway Computers collapsed around us, we weathered the dot-com bust and came out stronger.
Other tech companies did not foresee how the market would change and refused to make the tough choices needed to survive until it was too late. It is 15 years later and only this summer did the tech-heavy NASDAQ recover to its precrash high.
Hewlett-Packard not only survived the dot-com bust, but we also became the leader in every market segment and product category in which we competed. We doubled revenue to over $80 billion. We quadrupled the growth rate to 6.5%. We tripled innovation to produce an average of 15 patents a day.
Before I joined, Hewlett-Packard’s operating expenses had jumped by 18% while earnings dropped 12%. We had transformed the company from a lurching bureaucracy into an agile, tech industry leader. As a result, Hewlett-Packard grew from the 28th to 11th largest company in the United States during my tenure.
The toughest call that a CEO has to make is to tell an honest, hard-working employee that for a company to survive there is no longer a job for him or her. That is a hard choice. At Hewlett-Packard, those decisions saved 140,000 jobs and allowed HP to grow to 300,000 employees today.
The left has tried to attack me because I was fired from Hewlett-Packard.
Yes, I was fired in a boardroom brawl, which I’ve been up front about since the day it happened. I was fired because I challenged the status quo. It is what leaders must do. When you lead and when you challenge the status quo, you make enemies. It’s why Steve Jobs, Oprah Winfrey, Walt Disney and Mike Bloomberg have all been fired. Real change is never easy because the people who have benefited from the status quo want to preserve the status quo.
And yet, my tenure was longer than the median tenure of a Fortune 500 CEO.
In business, unlike politics, the numbers and the facts are clear. There is no spin room when you report earnings, just numbers and facts that anyone can download and evaluate. As the CEO of a publicly traded company, I could be held criminally liable for reporting false results. Wouldn’t it be amazing if politicians were held to this same standard?
I’m sure Democrats and the Clinton Machine will continue to use empty talking points and bumper sticker rhetoric against me because they know Hillary Clinton is the status quo. She is the epitome of a professional political class that has managed a bloated, inept, corrupt federal government for far too long.
Most Americans think we should shrink the size of the federal government and ensure that it is competent at its core functions. The progressive notion that government is the answer to our problems has time and again failed. As hundreds of thousands of baby boomers begin to retire from the federal bureaucracy, I would not replace them.
I am running on my track record because it demonstrates the type of leadership that I will bring to Washington: the resolve to make tough calls, the fortitude to challenge the status quo, and the character never to lie to the American people.
Margaret Thatcher once said she was not content to manage the decline of a great nation. Neither am I. We need a president who will answer every question and face every challenge. The political class may continue to attack my record. I have named many accomplishments. Why won’t Hillary Clinton name one?