Merck, Under Armour CEOs resign from Trump business panel

Angelica Greene
August 18, 2017

Merck & Co Inc's African American Chief Executive Kenneth Frazier resigned from President Trump's American Manufacturing Council on Monday citing Trump's limp response to the racial violence in Charlottesville.

"Under Armour engages in innovation and sports, not politics", Plank said. "I am appreciative for the opportunity to have served, but have chose to step down from the council".

"I can not understand why others have not followed Ken Frazier out the door", Summers said, referring to the CEO of Merck, who was the first to leave the council.

Two more leaders, Richard Trumka, president of the AFL-CIO labor union, and Thea Lee, the AFL-CIO's former deputy chief of staff, announced their resignations following Trump's comments, which assigned "blame" to protesters on "both sides" last weekend.

Trump responded on Twitter shortly after the announcement, saying now that Frazier resigned "he will have more time to lower ripoff drug prices".

Although Frazier avoided being specific about the reason that prompted him to quit, it is widely believed to be linked to Trump's statement over the clash in Charlottesville in the USA state of Virginia, which claimed the lives of three and wounded dozens.

The White House did not immediately answer a request to elaborate.

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Following mounting pressure, President Trump denounced white supremacists groups on Monday. Krzanich condemned the white supremacists marching and called out leaders in Washington for seeming "more concerned with attacking anyone who disagrees with them".

I have already made clear my abhorrence at the recent hate-spawned violence in Charlottesville, and earlier today I called on all leaders to condemn the white supremacists and their ilk who marched and committed violence,"Krzanich said in statement, Local media reported".

In his statements following the death of a counter-protestor who was killed after a vehicle driven by a white supremacist, Trump did not single out the racist organizations, but criticized the violence "from many sides".

Among the many high-profile industry titans on the council in January were Denise Morrison of Campbell Soup Company, Jeff Immelt of General Electric and Elon Musk of Tesla.

The president has himself admitted to producing Trump-branded products internationally on various occasions after it became a critique of his rivals during last year's presidential election. The Disney chairman Bob Iger and Tesla chief executive Elon Musk both resigned in June after the president announced he would withdraw the United States from the Paris climate agreement.

"For every CEO that drops out of the Manufacturing Council, I have many to take their place".

Other reports by GizPress

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