AFL-CIO Does the Right Thing
Politico and CBS report that America's largest labor organization pulls out of Trump's Manufacturing Council
Following yesterday’s story calling on the AFL-CIO to leave Trump’s Manufacturing Council and Trump’s defense of Nazi’s at an afternoon press conference, the AFL-CIO announced that they will no longer be a part of the council. Watch AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka's interview with CBS above and check out coverage from Politico.
After threatening to do so Monday, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka went ahead Tuesday and quit President Donald Trump's manufacturing council, following the example set by the chief executives of Merck, Intel, and Under Armour and by the president of the Alliance for American Manufacturing. Trumka's breaking point? Trump's backsliding at an impromptu Tuesday press conference to his initial view that "both sides" were to blame for Saturday's violent white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va., which left one counter-protester dead and more than a dozen injured. "You had many people in that group other than neo-Nazis and white nationalists ... people protesting very quietly the taking down the statue of Robert E. Lee," Trump said. (These "fine people" - Trump's phrase - were apparently too hard-of-hearing to pick up that their comrades were chanting "blood and soil" and "Jews will not replace us.")
"I cannot sit on a council for a president that tolerates bigotry and domestic terrorism," Trumka said in a written statement shortly after Trump's press conference. "His comments today were the last straw." Trumka had previously called the council's effectiveness into question, noting that it had "yet to hold any real meeting." A White House official sought to downplay that line of criticism, telling POLITICO's Ian Kullgren that the group was intended as a way to channel ad hoc advice to the president on certain issues - not to meet on a consistent basis.