Congressional reactions to planned Dow-DuPont merger

Dow Chemical and the DuPont Co. announced earlier this month that they are merging in a $130 billion chemical industry megadeal.

The merger would combine two companies that sell agricultural products to millions of farmers around the world, and make a variety of chemicals for consumer and industrial products ranging from electronics, automobiles, and household goods to building materials and safety equipment.

The all-stock merger calls for the two companies to combine as Dow-DuPont, then separate into three independent publicly traded companies focused on agriculture, material science and specialty products.

Members of Delaware’s congressional delegation offered their thoughts on the planned merger.

Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del.

“DuPont has been a Delaware company for over 200 years, carrying with it a centuries-old tradition of success. It should come as no surprise that Dow has reportedly long been motivated to pursue a merger with DuPont. While the news certainly feels like a warning sign for turbulence ahead, I believe that in adversity lies opportunity. We can sit around, wring our hands and bemoan the hand that Delaware has been dealt — or we can roll up our sleeves, join hands and get to work finding the opportunity within this perceived adversity.

“Now, perhaps more than ever, our congressional delegation must immediately get to work with Gov. Markell, the Delaware Legislature, and business and community leaders across the First State to do all that we can to make the best out of this situation. Working together, Delaware can prove that if DuPont and Dow do merge, it’s the smart decision to locate a significant portion of their business here.

“It’s not the time to sit back and accept our fate. It’s time to seize the day. Carpe Diem!”

Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del.

“DuPont is much more than an iconic company. DuPont is a central part of our state’s identity, and for generations, DuPont has offered good-paying jobs for so many Delaware families and fostered a culture of innovation and public service in our state.

“Delaware has a world class workforce and extensive research and development resources that are simply unmatched, and I’m hopeful that DuPont and Dow leaders will continue investing in our state.

“It isn’t yet clear what this merger will mean for Delaware, but as we learn more, my focus will be on the pensioners and employees whose lives could be affected. It’s those families and our community I’m concerned about.”

Rep. John Carney, D-Del.

“DuPont has been part of the fabric of Delaware for over two centuries. There’s no doubt about the lasting impact this company has had on our state. Since its founding in Delaware, DuPont has been a source for jobs, philanthropy, and economic development. That’s what makes this decision especially disappointing.

“In the 1990s, DuPont had over 25,000 employees in Delaware — while today, there are fewer than 7,000. Throughout this transition, the state, and the people of DuPont have remained resilient. And I am confident we will continue to do so. This change serves as another stark reminder that we can’t take anything for granted in today’s rapidly evolving economy. And it underscores the need to redouble our efforts that make Delaware a great place for companies to do business and create jobs. I hope and trust that DuPont and Dow will seriously consider the many benefits of retaining business and jobs in Delaware. I will be working hard — along with my delegation counterparts — to make sure they do.

“Lastly, and most importantly, I am committed to supporting Delawareans impacted by this merger with every means available to my office. I will work to help retirees who will be affected, and I will make sure that anyone who loses their job has the tools to find another. These employees, and their dedication to our state, are what make Delaware’s workforce our greatest asset.”

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