AUSTIN (KXAN) — A new television advertisement is running on Texas TVs from Empire State Development, New York’s business development arm, targeting conservatives and attempting to poach business from the state.
“For hundreds of years, New York State has stood as a beacon — a beacon to welcome those unwelcome in other places,” a woman says in the commercial.
Specifically. the ad campaign highlights New York’s history of welcoming diverse people. It calls out conservatives across the country, including Texas, painting them as anti-LGBT.
The Empire State has more Fortune 500 companies headquartered there, but the Texas population has ballooned in recent years. Just in 2013 alone, 21,000 people came to the state from New York.
Andrew Montgomery moved here for the weather and says companies will too.
“New York is cold. It’s on the eastern seaboard. It’s dirty. It’s been there for a long time. No, no. There’s no way,” Montgomery said.
“I’ve been to New York. It’s pretty cool. But would I move. Probably not,” said Rodrigo Zurita who says there’s nothing like the lone star state’s independent streak.
“There’s a lot of pride. There’s a lot of history. You know, this is the only place I know of that teaches Texas history in school,” said Zurita.
“I think it’s a little provocative,” said Amanda Kraus, who is neutral spectator from Wisconsin. But she does say the controversies the state of New York is playing on exist elsewhere too.
“But I think as a whole, our nation is working through those issues,” said Kraus.
And the Texan at the top didn’t take it well. Gov. Abbott tweeted how the a didn’t talk about high taxes, cost of living, regulations, union abuses, and how all those New Yorkers are slowly becoming Texans.
Full disclosure: KXAN is running the paid advertisement for a week on our channel.
In 2013, then Gov. Rick Perry touted the Texas economy to New York businesses to move to the Lone Star State.
“Texas is calling, your opportunity awaits,” Perry said in the ad.
It was only a million dollar ad buy, but the buzz surrounding it did the job. Multiple celebrities and business leaders, such as Emmitt Smith and Robert Rodriguez, took part.
Last year, Gov. Greg Abbott visited both Mexico and Cuba. While a number of issues were discussed, trade and economic development was a big part of the focus.
The Texas Enterprise Fund, under the Governor’s Office, is directly responsible for bringing many major businesses to Texas by offering incentives.