Continuing to Pursue a More Perfect Union

Read the letter from Howard Schultz, Starbucks chairman, president and ceo, to America's business leaders asking them to continue discussing ways to foster a culture of responsible self-government.

October 17, 2013

Dear Friends:

I write today with a sense of relief that our political leaders are governing again. Yet, it pains me to think of the millions of Americans whose voices will never be heard – whose lives were fractured by this senseless lack of responsibility. While we do not yet have the long-term plan that our economy and country needs, this is an important step forward. There is no doubt that the upcoming decisions and votes about long-term budget issues are complex and difficult ones for the President and Members of Congress.

It should be abundantly clear that a majority of Americans of varying political persuasions want our elected officials to continue to come together and make the hard decisions ahead in a spirit of civility and common purpose. Reasonable minds can disagree, but responsible leaders must still govern for the American people.

As to our responsibility as business leaders and citizens, I continue to believe we cannot be bystanders about our collective future. We are going to have to become more engaged so that Washington doesn’t fall back into this kind of unnecessary crisis every few months.

I appreciate the dialogue we have had and I hope we can continue to discuss ways to foster a culture of responsible self-government. The response to our Come Together petition drive – nearly two million partners (employees) and customers signed it – has inspired me to think more about what we can do at Starbucks to continue to use our scale for good.

Together, let’s continue to pursue a more perfect union.

With deep respect,