Power Sheet – December 22, 2015

December 22, 2015, 3:21 PM UTC

When Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker gave up on his run for the presidency in September, he framed his decision in unusual terms: “I believe that I am being called to lead by helping to clear the field in this race,” he said, and he urged other Republicans trailing hopelessly to do the same so that a few strong ones could challenge Donald Trump.

Produced by Ryan Derousseau

Walker was obviously putting the best face on a failed campaign, but he had a point: Sometimes leadership calls for stepping aside. Today we see two examples of leaders who haven’t figured that out, and one who has.

-Fifa’s suspended president, Sepp Blatter, seems increasingly delusional. When a massive corruption scandal exploded last May, Blatter clearly should have resigned. Instead he said he would not stand for reelection – in February. As the scandal grew, with just four months until the election, Fifa’s board suspended him for three months. He still didn’t get the message and protested even louder that he was innocent and would fight. Now Fifa’s ethics committee has banned him from soccer for eight years. Blatter is 79 years old. Are you getting the message yet, Sepp? Apparently not. He insists even more stridently that he is entirely blameless and will fight the decision. He’s doing it, he says, “for Fifa.” Please. Everyone but him knows the best thing he could do for world soccer is disappear.

Martin Shkreli, who was arrested by federal authorities last week on charges of securities fraud and wire fraud, and who has since resigned as CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals and fired as CEO of KaloBios Pharmaceuticals, wants you to know he is misunderstood and has been treated unfairly. Asked by the WSJ if he thinks the decision to arrest him was influenced by his decision to raise the price of a life-saving drug by a factor of 50, he replied, “Yeah, absolutely.” Reading his remarks, you wouldn’t guess that the feds informed him last January that he was being investigated, long before the world had ever heard of him. Oh, and his Twitter persona as an obnoxious braggart? Not the real him. It was just “a social experiment.” Martin, no one is buying it.

-Yesterday South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham dropped out of the race for the Republican nomination, having attracted virtually no support in six months of campaigning. He exited with wit and class. Known particularly for expertise in security and the Middle East, he said, “Hillary, if you get to be President, I’ll help you where I can. I hope you’re not. But if you are, I’ll be there to help you win a war we can’t afford to lose.” Asked about regrets, he said, “I regret that I haven’t been a better candidate…. But that’s just about me …. It has been the joy of my life to run for President of the United States.”

Graham understands that being a leader sometimes means stepping aside. If only all leaders understood.

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What We're Reading Today

CDC investigating new E. Coli cases linked to Chipotle

The Center for Disease Control says this could be a separate outbreak from the one linked to Chipotle that started in October, sickening 53 people. The illnesses occurred between Nov. 18 and Nov. 26 in Kansas and Oklahoma. Earlier this month, Chipotle co-CEO Steve Ells announced a series of changes to its food handling process to reduce the potential for contamination. CNN

SEC pares back case against Steve Cohen

The agency has also begun settlement talks with the billionaire founder of hedge fund SAC Capital Advisors. The company pleaded guilty to insider trading in 2013, but the SEC has sued Cohen in an effort to ban him from ever managing other people's money. The partial retreat by the SEC comes after the reversal of a conviction of a senior SAC trader and six analysts. WSJ

Amazon's German warehouse workers strike

The strikes, for better working conditions, will continue until Dec. 24. at four  warehouses and for shorter stints at two others. Germany is Amazon's second largest market after the U.S. The strikes come as Jeff Bezos's company tries to fill final holiday orders. An Amazon spokeswoman says they will not affect delivery schedules. Reuters

Martin Shkreli ousted from another pharma company

KaloBios Pharmaceuticals has fired CEO Martin Shkreli following his arrest last week on securities fraud and wire fraud charges connected to hedge funds and a separate biotech firm he founded. Shkreli become CEO of the company when another company he used to run, Turing Pharmaceuticals, took control of KaloBios. USA Today

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Engine Talk

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VW investigation focuses on former engines chief

In 2007, just before California instituted strict emission standards, Wolfgang Hatz became head of engines and transmission development, hired by former Volkswagen CEO Martin Winterkorn. When the emission standards were announced, Hatz seemed skeptical that the company could reach them. When the emissions cheating was uncovered in September, Hatz was one of the first employees suspended by VW. His potential involvement raises questions about what Winterkorn and current CEO Matthias Müller knew or should have known. NYT

SpaceX lands rocket

Elon Musk's company successfully landed a rocket used to send a satellite into space. The company had previously tried to land a rocket upright four times, but they all crashed. Fortune

Up or Out

Goldman Sachs co-head of global mergers and acquisitions Gregg Lemkau and co-heads of the global financing group Marc Nachmann and Jim Esposito have been named to the company's management committee. NYT

J.C. Penney hired Therace Risch as CIO, replacing Scott Laverty. WSJ

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Our new ranking of the 50 most fun places to work...

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Nestle to go cage-free by 2020

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Despite Star Wars' box office triumph...

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BMW fined $40 million...

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Happy Birthday

Republican presidential candidate and Texas Senator Ted Cruz turns 45 today. Biography

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