President Trump Disbands Manufacturing Council and Strategic and Policy Forum

Members of President Donald Trump’s Strategic and Policy Forum have agreed to disband the group, sources told CNBC, as corporate backlash mounts against the president. 

The business advisory council made up of top business leaders is separate from Trump’s manufacturing council, which several business leaders left this week.

The business backlash to Trump follows his tepid response to violence at a white nationalist rally over the weekend, where one woman died and 19 people were injured after a car rammed into counterprotesters. On Tuesday, Trump appeared to equate torch-bearing white nationalists with the protesters who demonstrated against them.

“The thinking was it was important to do as a group,” a member told CNBC. “As a panel, not as individuals because it would have more significant impact. It makes a central point that it’s not going to go forward. It’s done.”

After the members agreed to disband and condemn Trump’s statements, the president said he would end both the Strategic and Policy Forum and the manufacturing council.

The Strategic and Policy Forum, led by Blackstone CEO Steve Schwarzman, featured:

  • Paul Atkins, CEO, Patomak Global Partners
  • Mary Barra, Chairman and CEO, General Motors
  • Toby Cosgrove, CEO, Cleveland Clinic
  • Jamie Dimon, Chairman and CEO, JPMorgan Chase
  • Larry Fink, Chairman and CEO, BlackRock
  • Rich Lesser, President and CEO, Boston Consulting Group
  • Doug McMillon, President and CEO, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
  • Jim McNerney, Former Chairman, President, and CEO, Boeing
  • Indra Nooyi, Chairman and CEO of PepsiCo
  • Adebayo “Bayo” Ogunlesi, Chairman and Managing Partner, Global Infrastructure Partners
  • Ginni Rometty, Chairman, President, and CEO, IBM
  • Kevin Warsh, Shepard Family Distinguished Visiting Fellow in Economics, Hoover Institute, Former Member of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System
  • Mark Weinberger, Global Chairman and CEO, EY
  • Jack Welch, Former Chairman and CEO, General Electric
  • Daniel Yergin, Pulitzer Prize-winner, Vice Chairman of IHS Markit

The business leaders chose to dissolve the council in order to “condemn” the president’s comments about the Charlottesville violence, the same member said. The member described Trump’s defiant press conference on Tuesday as a “tripwire.”

They had heard from employees and customers about the council.

“There really was nothing to debate,” the member said.

Several members of a separate Trump manufacturing council stepped down in recent days.

SOURCE: Patti Domm | Jacob Pramuk
CNBC