Published: Fri, August 18, 2017
Worldwide | By Gretchen Simon

Trump shuts down business advisory councils after business leaders resign

Trump shuts down business advisory councils after business leaders resign

President and CEO of, Inge Thulin, announced Wednesday he is leaving President Donald Trump's Manufacturing Council.

"It's done." Soon after, Trump took credit for shutting down both that group and a separate Manufacturing Council, "rather than putting pressure on the businesspeople".

Another CEO is walking away from President Trump. "As such, the President and we are disbanding the Forum". He called Trump's statements from Tuesday "deeply troubling".

Before it was disbanded, The Wall Street Journalreported the leaders of 3M, General Electric, United Technologies and Campbell Soup all elected to quit the White House council on manufacturing.

JPMorgan Chase & Co CEO Jamie Dimon, a member of one of the panels, said he strongly disagreed with Trump's reaction to the events in Charlottesville, adding in a statement that "racism, intolerance and violence are always wrong" and "fanning divisiveness is not the answer".

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Frazier announced on Twitter that he is resigning from the council, saying, "America's leaders must honor our fundamental values by clearly rejecting expressions of hatred, bigotry and group supremacy, which run counter to the American ideal that all people are created equal".

The alliance with the White House forged in hopes of overhauling the tax code, cutting regulations and jumpstarting new infrastructure investments had turned into a risk for corporate leaders. Only by acting together and having those panels disbanded would they be able to avoid harsher scrutiny not just from the public but also from a president with a track record of blasting individual companies that cross him on Twitter. A spokesperson said the company is no longer a member of the council. While the manufacturing group was publicly coming apart, CEOs on the Strategic and Policy Forum made a decision to act together.

One member of the forum, IBM chief executive Ginni Rometty, said in an email to her staff that "this group can no longer serve the objective for which it was formed".

On Tuesday, President Trump equated the actions of white supremacists to protesters. The council is led by two longtime friends of Trump who stand to benefit greatly from their newfound proximity to the White House: Steven Roth, the CEO of Vornado Realty Trust, who co-owned a NY department store with Trump in the 1980s, and Richard LeFrak, a billionaire NY real estate developer.

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