Head of main U.S. labor union leaves Trump panel over Charlottesville response


The head of the AFL-CIO has stepped down from the White House's manufacturing council after President Trump doubled down on his position that violence in Charlottesville was perpetrated by many sides at a press conference Tuesday.

"We can not sit on a council for a President who tolerates bigotry and domestic terrorism", Trumka and Lee said in a statement.

Trump has hit back at the executives who left, claiming others would join the council.

But most other council members stopped short of actually quitting or even criticizing the president directly.

"In the face of such ignorance and malice, " the organization said in a statement, "all of us must speak out and show unwavering resolve that makes it clear that all Americans are entitled to the same rights and protections".

Paul was the fourth business leader to announce his resignation, after the departures of Intel CEO Brian Krzanich, Under Armour CEO Kevin Plank and Merck CEO Kenneth Frazier.

6 p.m. ― The AFL-CIO resigned from President Donald Trump's manufacturing council Tuesday evening.

At least 17 members remain on the council, nine of whom have said this week that they are staying.

More news: Three CEOs have now resigned from Trump council over his Charlottesville statement

On Tuesday afternoon, speaking about the violence in Charlottesville, Va., over the weekend, Trump appeared to backtrack on his critical comments a day earlier about the KKK, neo-Nazis and white supremacists. "We must resign on behalf of America's working people, who reject all notions of legitimacy of these bigoted groups", Trumka and Lee said in a statement.

"America's leaders must honor our fundamental values 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.

Musk, the first to resign, faced considerable backlash from Tesla customers for his decision to work in conjunction with the beleaguered president, citing what they saw as Trump's objectionable nature, behavior, rhetoric and proposed policies along the campaign trail. The president wrote that the Merck CEO "will have more time to LOWER RIPOFF DRUG PRICES!"

The statement came less than an hour after Trump, speaking from his Fifth Ave. skyscraper in NY, drew shocked reactions when he said the groups protesting white-supremacists in Virginia on Saturday were "also very violent".

The paralegal was mowed down by a auto that smashed into a group of demonstrators as they held a counterprotest to marching white supremacists. He said he would "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".

The president of the Alliance for American Manufacturing has resigned from President Trump's American Manufacturing Council, making him the fifth business leader to do so.

They all released statements that condemned racism or welcomed tolerance.