Occupy Wall Street Protests on GE CEO’s Lawn
A crowd of 100 protesters, some from New York City’s Occupy Wall Street movement and others from Occupy New Haven, came together in a show of solidarity on Saturday afternoon on General Electric CEO Jeff Immelt’s front lawn in New Canaan, Conn.
“[General Electric is] an enormously successful company that pays no income taxes. We felt it was important for someone like Jeff Immelt to hear from people who are struggling in this economy,” said Jon Green, director of the Connecticut Working Families Party.
Many of those who came from New York were responding to an invitation posted on Occupy Wall Street’s General Assembly web site that read: “In the land of the free they tax me but not G.E!” It continues, saying: “ General Electric made billions last year; they paid no taxes, outsourced thousands of jobs, and got over $3 billion in tax refunds!”
Immelt reportedly earned $20 million in 2010. Despite his compensation, General Electric continued to shed jobs. According to an ABCNews.com analysis, General Electric has let go more than 19,000 workers since 2008.
Aside from being the CEO of General Electric, Immelt was appointed by President Obama to chair the task force on jobs and competitiveness.
Green said he was unable to tell if Immelt was in his sprawling 10,000-square-foot home, which according to Trulia.com is worth an estimated $5.25 million, at the time of the protest.
“It’s not the kind of home where you can just look in the window and see if the TV is on,” he said.
It’s not the first time protesters have paid visits to those they call “the 1 percent” at home.
Earlier this month, an estimated 2,000 protesters embarked on a “Millionaire’s March” in New York City, visiting the homes of News Corp. owner Rupert Murdoch, real estate developer Howard Milstein and JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon.
“I want the millionaires to know that we won’t stand for this,” said Elizabeth Owens, a New York resident who participated in the Oct. 11 march., told ABCNews.com. ”I pay more than they do in taxes!”