Three members of Donald Trump’s advisory council resign in protest of his handling of Charlottesville

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Over the past month the Donald Trump administration has been hemorrhaging senior staffers. The positions of Chief of Staff, Communications Director, Press Secretary, and three National Security Council slots have all changed hands, with even more personnel chaos rumored to be on the way. But now Donald Trump has a new kind of problem: people are resigning from his advisory council in direct and very public protest of him.

Before the sun came up today, Merck CEO Ken Frazier posted a statement on the official Merck account on Twitter announcing that he was resigning from the President’s American Manufacturing Council, in protest of the white supremacist attack in Charlottesville and Trump’s failed response to it (link). This led Trump to reach into his usual bag of tricks by hurling cartoonish insults at Frazier on his own Twitter account. But as it turned out, Frazier would merely be the first defection of the day.

By this evening, Under Armour CEO Kevin Plank had also posted a statement on his company’s official Twitter account which confirmed that he was resigning from the same council, and for the same reason (link). Thus far Trump hasn’t bothered to publicly attack Plank. Maybe it’s because Frazier is black, and Trump saw an opportunity to score points with his racist base by attacking him, while Plank is white. Or maybe Trump has belatedly realized that he can’t just keep attacking everyone who resigns, as a means of stopping the others from resigning. Sure enough, the CEO of Intel has also now resigned from the council within the past few minutes, according to a blog post on his company’s website.

Even as the defections have continued throughout the day, mainstream Americans have continued to apply public pressure to the brands whose CEOs still have yet to resign from the council. That includes Dell, General Electric, Campbell Soup, Dow Chemical, Whirlpool and others. While those CEOs may be afraid of getting attacked by Trump if they resign, they’ll lose a whole lot of brand equity with the public if they don’t. More defections are still to come, and Trump cam’t stop them. Regular readers, feel free to support Palmer Report.

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