Ever since he announced his candidacy for president, Donald Trump has been the subject of many controversies and debates. Whether it was the peace treaty, ISIS comments, or even his past life and business dealings, Trump has managed to be the subject of much criticism. Just when it seems as though everything is about to calm down, another wave of conjecture hits him and the nation.
On Monday, the CEOs of Intel, Merck, and Under Armour resigned from President Trump’s American Manufacturing Council, following his initially tepid response to weekend violence at a rally of white supremacists in Charlottesville, Virginia.
The demonstration in Charlottesville by hundreds of white nationalists took a deadly turn on Saturday when a car plowed into a group of counter protesters, killing one person and injuring others.
“I resigned from the council to call attention to the serious harm our divided political climate is causing to critical issues,” Intel Chief Executive Brian Krzanich said in a blog post.
Kenneth Fraizer, the chief executive of drugmaker Merck and an African-American, said he left the advisory council because of the president’s reaction after the violence between white supremacists and counter protesters. Frazier cited the need to “take a stand against intolerance and extremism.”
“America’s leaders must honor our fundamental views 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 in a statement announcing his resignation. “As CEO of Merck and as a matter of personal conscience, I feel a responsibility to take a stand against intolerance and extremism,” Frazier, the only African American CEO of a major pharmaceutical company, wrote in a tweet.
Trump responded a while later in a tweet of his own, saying, “Ken Frazier of Merck Pharma has resigned from President’s Manufacturing Council, he will have more time to LOWER RIPOFF DRUG PRICES!”
Later, in a second tweet, Trump said:
“@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!”