To All in H+K:
Like many of you, I viewed with utter disbelief today’s breach of the U.S. Capitol and the disruption of the Joint Session of Congress to count the electoral votes for President of the United States. Sadly, life was lost during the riot and many were hurt. I join with leaders around the world to condemn this lawless and shocking violence that dishonors our country and the values we stand for.
First and foremost, I want to assure you that our people in Washington D.C. are accounted for, safe, and taking the necessary precautions to stay out of harm’s way.
This has been a difficult and disturbing day for many of us. I saw shock and pain on the faces of my colleagues who, like me, could not believe our constitutional principles could be so distorted and that our democracy itself could come under threat. Today’s events have made me pause to focus on the core principles so important for maintaining peace and stability in the U.S, with significant implications for the rest of the world – and for all of us at H+K.
Contentious elections are not new in U.S. history. Constitutional mechanisms to ensure and support a peaceful transition of power have been put to the test before. Our Congress is well positioned to complete the counting of the electoral votes and conduct the related discussion with representatives of the American people, in accordance with procedures established 130 years ago. The process of moving forward with the certification and inauguration of the new president must not, and I am confident will not, be disrupted.
Americans are empowered by broad personal liberties established and protected by the Constitution, which protects those with whom we both agree and disagree. Extreme partisanship of any kind compromises the freedoms intended by the Constitution and weakens democracy. Through our work as communicators, we must and will endeavor to restore and support more civil discourse, denounce hate and violence, and create a better, more inclusive, and more tolerant society.
As a U.S.-based company, H+K is committed to constructive engagement with our federal government. We look forward to establishing productive relationships with the new Biden administration, and we will no doubt have a role to play to help strengthen our country and our relationships globally as the next chapter unfolds.
As a global and a very international company, we are proudly diverse – which requires us to be open-minded, knowledgeable about the factors shaping culture and political philosophy around the world, and able and willing to take the journey of growth and change with a wide array of employees and clients.
This evening in Washington, D.C., the Capitol is secure, peace will be restored, and the progress of democracy will no doubt continue tomorrow. May we continue to forge from the fire the vision, commitment, and resiliency to become better.