CEOs left due to Trump’s responses to Charlottesville.
President Donald Trump has decided to dissolve his Manufacturing Council and the Strategy & Policy Forum after numerous CEOs left both due to the president’s responses of Charlottesville.
The strategy and policy forum had already decided to disband after a Wednesday phone call. Blackstone Group LP’s Stephen Schwarzman, who headed the strategy forum, wanted to inform Trump about disbanding the council before making a public announcement. From Bloomberg:
In a statement from the strategy and policy forum, the group said it was breaking up amid the controversy. “The debate over forum participation has become a distraction from our well-intentioned and sincere desire to aid vital policy discussions on how to improve the lives of everyday Americans.”
Schwarzman hosted a conference call late Wednesday morning in which he gauged how many members were ready to leave and who was willing to stay, according a person with knowledge of the conversation. The majority indicated they would leave the group, so a decision was reached to disband, said the person, who asked not to be identified discussing private deliberations.
CEOs started to leave the councils after Trump fumbled numerous responses to the white supremacist marches in Charlottesville, VA. From Business Insider:
The move comes two days after the departure of Merck CEO Kenneth Frazier from Trump’s manufacturing council, another one of the White House’s meetings of business leaders, which set off a wave of departures from that group. Frazier and other business leaders cited Trump’s muddled response to the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia as the impetus for the exits.
The Strategic and Policy Forum features a diverse group of leaders including JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon, BlackRock CEO Larry Fink, General Motors CEO Mary Barra, and Walmart CEO Doug McMillon. Steve Schwarzman, CEO of private equity giant Blackstone, is the leader of the council.
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