3M CEO quits now-defunct Trump advisory council

MINNEAPOLIS - Adding to a growing list of others, the CEO of 3M announced Wednesday he is resigning from President Donald Trump's Manufacturing Advisory Council. 

Inge Thulin, chairman of the board, president and CEO for 3M, said in a statement, "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. 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."

Thulin was the sixth to drop out of Trump's council in recent days, responding to the President's remarks on the events in Charlottesville over the weekend. Denise Morrison, CEO of Campbell's Soup, announced her resignation shortly after Thulin. 

Roughly an hour later, the resignations were rendered moot as Trump tweeted he was ending both the manufacturing council and strategy and policy forum.

On Tuesday, Trump followed up statements where he condemned the KKK and white supremacists who attended the weekend's rally, with a defense of those groups, placing the blame on "both sides."

Thulin follows the CEOs of Merck, Under Amour, Intel, AFL-CIO and the president of a manufacturing industry group. 

Thulin's full statement is below:

Sustainability, diversity and inclusion are my personal values and also fundamental to the 3M Vision. The past few months have provided me with an opportunity to reflect upon my commitment to these values.

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. 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.

At 3M, we will continue to champion an environment that supports sustainability, diversity and inclusion. I am committed to building a company that improves lives in every corner of the world.

With Thulin's resignation, here's the list of those who have left Trump's council (since the events in Charlottesville, and before):

Kenneth Frazier, Merck

Frazier announced on Twitter that he is resigning from the council, saying, "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." 

Brian Krzanich, Intel Corp.

Krzanich is resigning from the council. Writing on the tech company's blog, Krzanich said he is resigning "to call attention to the serious harm our divided political climate is causing to critical issues. I have already made clear my abhorrence at the recent hate-spawned violence in Charlottesville, and earlier today I called on all leaders to condemn the white supremacists and their ilk who marched and committed violence. I resigned because I want to make progress."

Mark Fields, Ford Motor Co.

In May, Fields left the Ford Motor Company. A spokesperson for the company confirmed that there is no representative from Ford on the council.

Mario Longhi, U.S. Steel

Longhi retired in June. A spokesperson said the company is no longer a member of the council.

Scott Paul, Alliance for American Manufacturing

Paul could not be reached by USA TODAY. But via Twitter Paul announced that he would resign, saying: "I'm resigning from the Manufacturing Jobs Initiative because it's the right thing for me to do."

Kevin Plank, Under Armour

Plank is resigning from the council and released an official statement:

"I joined the American Manufacturing Council because I believed it was important for Under Armour to have an active seat at the table and represent our industry. We remain resolute in our potential and ability to improve American manufacturing. However, Under Armour engages in innovation and sports, not politics. I am appreciative of the opportunity to have served, but have decided to step down from the council. 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."

Elon Musk, Tesla

Musk resigned from the President's Council in June because of disagreements with the Trump administration's policy on climate change.

Richard Trumka, AFL-CIO

Late Tuesday, Trumka tweeted a statement reversing an earlier confirmation that he would remain on the council. The reversal followed a Trump briefing in New York City Tuesday afternoon where the president defended his initial response that many sides were to blame for the Charlottesville clashes, arguing that left wing groups were just as violent as the white supremacists who staged a demonstration in the Virginia city.

"We cannot sit on a council for a president who tolerates bigotry and domestic terrorism. President Trump's remarks today repudiate his forced remarks yesterday about the KKK and neo-Nazis." The statement went on to say, "We joined this council with the intent to be a voice for working people and real hope that it would result in positive economic policy, but it has become yet another broken promise on the president's record."

The labor union's previous statement said it was assessing its role and said that the council had "yet to hold any real meeting."

Thea Lee, AFL-CIO

Lee, who worked as economist and deputy chief of staff at AFL-CIO, also stepped down from the council. She hasn't been employed by the labor group for several months. But she had continued to represent the group on the council.

Denise Morrison, CEO of Campbell Soup

Morrison released a statement after Thulin on Wednesday, saying "Racism and murder are unequivocally reprehensible and are not morally equivalent to anything else that happened in Charlottesville. 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 American great."

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