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Carl's Jr. parent may move to Texas [Updated]

February 2, 2011 | 12:55 pm

The-Big-Carl Carl's Jr. is in "very early" talks to move its headquarters to Texas, a spokeswoman said Wednesday.

The company's president, Andy Puzder, has been on a media blitz through the Lone Star State for the last couple of days, where he and spokeswoman Beth Mansfield have been hawking Carl's burgers in an effort to stir up some manly dining interest during the upcoming Super Bowl.

In an interview with the Dallas Morning News' Karen Robinson-Jacobs, Puzder said he would meet with Texas Gov. Rick Perry to discuss a move. Mansfield, who said she would give us more information when the pair arrive back in Southern California in a few hours, said there were "no plans yet" and that the talks were "very early." 

CKE Restaurants, which owns the Hardee's and Carl's chains, has 10 restaurants in the Dallas area, but the firm has deep roots in Southern California. Now headquartered in Carpinteria, the company was founded by the late Carl Karcher in Orange County in 1941.

He would -- pardon the burger joke -- flip if he heard about this!

[Updated 5:46 p.m.: Puzder, back now in sunny SoCal, says that at this point there are more reasons to stay in California than to go. But he says that every time the state comes up with new regulations, there are more reasons to leave. The company will continue talking to Perry and others in Texas, and plans to have 300 stores there by the end of the decade. But there are no plans to move any time soon. Meanwhile, Puzder got some mileage out of today's flurry of news: a California state official called him and wanted to talk. The Republican stalwart says the call from a high-ranking Democrat was the first he's had from a top official from either party about what it would take to keep him - and the company - in the Golden State.] 

--- Sharon Bernstein