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After Attorney General Jeff Sessions confirmed that the Trump administration would be ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which allows people who were brought to the United States as children illegally to stay and work in the country, the president and CEO of the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Palomarez, announced he was leaving Trump's National Diversity Council. "As a nation of immigrants, we have a moral responsibility to support and defend 'Dreamers,' who arrived to this country — at the average age of six — through no fault of their own," Palomarez said in a statement announcing his departure. "These individuals have already become dynamic contributors to our American economy and play an important role in our communities." Before the decision was announced, he had told CNN that he would quit the council if Trump were to end DACA.
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Kammen, a professor of energy at the University of California, Berkeley, served as a climate Science Envoy for the State Department until Aug. 23, when he handed in his letter of resignation. He said he decided to resign after Trump's response to Charlottesville. "Your response to Charlottesville enables racism, sexism, & harms our country and planet," he said in a tweet alongside his letter. Kammen had a decades-long history of government work, with roles in the Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Energy and the State Department. His letter of resignation had a subtle message, too: The first letter of each paragraph spelled out the word "impeach."
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THE ENTIRE ARTS & HUMANITIES PANEL
On August 18, what was left of The President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities collectively resigned from the panel in protest of Trump's comments on Charlottesville. All 16 (now former) members of the committee — which included actor Kal Penn, artist Chuck Close and musician Paula Boggs — wrote a letter to Trump where they explained their reasoning for the mass departure. "Ignoring your hateful rhetoric would have made us complicit in your words and actions,” the letter read. They continued, urging Trump to resign if he did not change his course on Charlottesville. "Your values are not American values. We must be better than this. We are better than this. If this is not clear to you, then we call on your to resign your office, too."
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The CEO of Tesla and SpaceX warned in a May tweet that if Trump pulled the U.S. out of the Paris Accords, Musk would have "no choice" but to depart the president's business advisory and manufacturing councils. When Trump announced his decision to withdraw the U.S. from the climate agreement just one day later, on June 1, Musk followed through. "Am departing presidential councils," he tweeted. "Climate change is real. Leaving Paris is not good for America or the world."
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Trump's decision to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris Accords also led Disney's CEO to leave the president's business advisory council. Iger announced the move in a tweet just hours after Trump made the announcement. "As a matter of principle, I've resigned from the President's Council over the #ParisAgreement withdrawal," he wrote.
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The Uber founder and former CEO's place on Trump's business advisory council was controversial early on in Trump's tenure. After the ride-sharing app turned on surge pricing at New York's JFK Airport while people were protesting the first implementation of Trump's travel ban in January, Uber faced swift backlash, with critics accusing the company of attempting to profit from a taxi strike launched in protest of the ban. Kalanick had previously defended his place on Trump's council, writing in a memo to employees, "We'll partner with anyone in the world as long they're about making transportation in cities better, creating job opportunities, making it easier to get around, getting pollution out of the air and traffic off the streets." After the backlash, it took a few days for Kalanick to officially leave Trump's advisory council, which he did on Feb. 2, according to The New York Times.
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Frazier, the CEO of Merck, served on Trump's manufacturing council until Aug. 14. He announced his resignation in protest of Trump's response to the white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, on Aug. 11. Frazier said in a statement: "America's leaders must honor our fundamental values by clearly rejecting expressions of hatred, bigotry and group supremacy," according to CNN. Trump hit back on Twitter, writing that since Frazier had resigned, "He will have more time to LOWER RIPOFF DRUG PRICES!" In a second tweet later that day, 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!
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Just hours after Frazier announced he was leaving the manufacturing council, Under Armour CEO Plank followed suit. His statement didn't outright cite Trump's response to Charlottesville as the reason for his departure — but it did hint at it. According to CNBC, 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."
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The next domino to fall from Trump's manufacturing council was Krzanich, the CEO of Intel. "I resigned because I want to make progress, while many in Washington seem more concerned with attacking anyone who disagrees with them," he said of his choice, according to CNN.
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The CEO of the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) resigned from the manufacturing council on Aug. 15. He explained his decision to quit the council in an article for The New York Times. "His response to the white supremacist violence in Charlottesville was the last straw," Trumka wrote of Trump. "We in the labor community refuse to normalize bigotry and hatred. And we cannot in good conscience extend a hand of cooperation to those who condone it." He also revealed more information about the council, claiming no official meetings had ever been held during his tenure and calling it "another broken promise." And in a joint statement with Trumka, Thea Lee, the deputy chief of staff for the AFL-CIO, announced her own resignation from the council, according to CNN.
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Just before Trump announced his decision to disband the two councils, Thulin, the CEO of 3M, announced he was quitting the manufacturing council, making him the seventh person to do so. "I joined the Manufacturing Jobs Initiative in January to advocate for policies that align with our values and encourage even stronger investment and job growth — in order to make the United States stronger, healthier and more prosperous for all people," he said in a statement, according to the Star Tribune. "After careful consideration, I believe the initiative is no longer an effective vehicle for 3M to advance these goals. As a result, today I am resigning from the Manufacturing Advisory Council."
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Paul, the president of the Alliance for American Manufacturing, also resigned from the manufacturing council following Trump's remarks on the Charlottesville rally. Paul announced the decision in a tweet just before noon on Aug. 15, writing: "I'm resigning from the Manufacturing Jobs Initiative because it's the right thing for me to do."
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In direct response to Trump's comments that "both sides" were to blame for the violence in Charlottesville, Morrison, the CEO of the Campbell Soup Company, announced her decision to leave the manufacturing council. “Racism and murder are unequivocally reprehensible and are not morally equivalent to anything else that happened in Charlottesville," she said in a statement published on the company's website. "I believe the President should have been – and still needs to be – unambiguous on that point. Following yesterday’s remarks from the President, I cannot remain on the Manufacturing Jobs Initiative. I will continue to support all efforts to spur economic growth and advocate for the values that have always made America great.”
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