President Donald Trump’s power to polarize continued after the weekend’s tragic events in Charlottesville, Va.—and his subsequent remarks—caused the president to become further isolated from some members of the business community on Tuesday.
Scott Paul, President of the Alliance for American Manufacturing, stepped down from President Trump’s American Manufacturing Council on Tuesday. Paul is the latest member of a group of chief executives from some of the biggest U.S. companies in manufacturing-based businesses to resign from the council, which grew from the president’s early Manufacturing Jobs Initiative.
Paul took to Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR) on Tuesday morning to officially announce his move.
I’m resigning from the Manufacturing Jobs Initiative because it’s the right thing for me to do.
— Scott Paul (@ScottPaulAAM) August 15, 2017
The head of the Alliance for American Manufacturing’s resignation from President Trump’s council to promote American manufacturing jobs is hardly what the president would have hoped for.
Paul followed a recent wave of high profile CEO’s who separated themselves from the president after the weekend’s deadly white supremacist rally. But many, including the CEOs who left the council, cited President Trump’s seemingly noncommittal rebuke of the white supremacist.
Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK)
Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) CEO Kenneth Frazier—one of the few African American CEOs in the Fortune 500—was the first major council member to step down on Monday.
“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,” Frazier said.
— Merck (@Merck) August 14, 2017
Intel Corporation (INTC)
“Earlier today, I tendered my resignation from the American Manufacturing Council,” Krzanich said in a blog post. “I resigned to call attention to the serious harm our divided political climate is causing to critical issues, including the serious need to address the decline of American manufacturing. Politics and political agendas have sidelined the important mission of rebuilding America’s manufacturing base.”
Krzanich Tweeted the following just hours before the official resignation was posted.
There should be no hesitation in condemning hate speech or white supremacy by name. #Intel asks all our countries leadership to do the same
— Brian Krzanich (@bkrunner) August 14, 2017
Under Armour Inc (UAA)
Under Armour’s Kevin Plank, who has caught flack from UA athlete’s including Stephen Curry for his initial support of President Trump and the council, also took to Twitter to post his reasons for leaving.
“I am appreciative of the opportunity to have served, but have decided to step down from the council,” Plank said. “I love our country and our company and will continue to focus my efforts on inspiring every person that they can do anything through the power of sport which promotes unity, diversity and inclusion.”
I love our country & company. I am stepping down from the council to focus on inspiring & uniting through power of sport. – CEO Kevin Plank pic.twitter.com/8YvndJMjj1
— Under Armour (@UnderArmour) August 15, 2017
President Trump was quick to respond on Twitter to the recent resignations.
Now that Ken Frazier of Merck Pharma has resigned from President’s Manufacturing Council,he will have more time to LOWER RIPOFF DRUG PRICES!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 14, 2017
.@Merck Pharma is a leader in higher & higher drug prices while at the same time taking jobs out of the U.S. Bring jobs back & LOWER PRICES!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 14, 2017
For every CEO that drops out of the Manufacturing Council, I have many to take their place. Grandstanders should not have gone on. JOBS!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 15, 2017
Under Armour stock took a big hit on Tuesday. Shares of the struggling sportswear company sank 4.14% in afternoon trading after it touched a new 52-week low of $17.90 a share earlier. Dick’s Sporting Goods Inc (NYSE:DKS) saw its stock price crash today, and Under Armour has large exposure at the chain.
Shares of Intel are down around 1% for the year and also dipped 1.29% on Tuesday. Merck stock has risen so far this year, but much less than the Dow Industrial Average. Shares of Merck hovered flat before seeing a marginal loss.
What Companies Are Left?
Despite the recent resignations, 19 chief executives currently comprise the American Manufacturing Council, including Dow Chemical Co (NYSE:DOW), General Electric Company (NYSE:GE), Boeing Co (NYSE:BA), and other big names.
Of the original 28 companies that were asked to join President Trump’s manufacturing council, five have now stepped down. The first major executive to part ways was Tesla Inc’s (NASDAQ:TSLA) Elon Musk, who left the council earlier this year after President Trump announced that the U.S. would withdraw from the Paris climate agreement.
The four other executives who parted ways with the council left because they are no longer in their positions. This list includes former Ford F CEO, Mark Fields.
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