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Wal-Mart CEO says Trump missed 'critical opportunity' to bring America together

  • Wal-Mart Chief Executive Doug McMillon has issued a statement regarding the recent events in Charlottesville, Virginia, saying President Trump missed a 'critical opportunity' to speak up for America.
  • Wal-Mart was known for supporting Trump during his run for presidency, according to the Wall Street Journal.
  • The retail CEO has said he wants to remain "engaged" and influence policy in a positive way.

Add Wal-Mart's CEO to the list of executives speaking out against President Donald Trump's response, or lack thereof, to protests in Charlottesville, Virginia, over the weekend.

On Tuesday, Chief Executive Doug McMillon issued a statement saying the president "missed a critical opportunity to help bring our country together." The same memo was sent to company employees Monday evening.

McMillon's comments come amid growing backlash against President Trump, and how he reacted to violent protests that resulted in one fatality.

On Monday, CEOs from Merck, Under Armour and Intel said they were stepping down from their roles within Trump's manufacturing council.

Although McMillon doesn't serve on the manufacturing council, he holds a different role within the administration's strategic policy group.

McMillon told employees in his memo: "[W]e should stay engaged to try to influence decisions in a positive way and help bring people together. ... I will continue to strongly advocate on behalf of our associates and customers."

In response to the uproar, President Trump has since followed suit on Tuesday by calling the executives who left his council "grandstanders."

Shortly after Trump made this comment, Scott Paul, president of the Alliance for American Manufacturing, said he would drop out. Paul, head of the group that aims to promote American manufacturing, said, "it's the right thing for me to do."

Read the full memo from Wal-Mart's CEO, Doug McMillon:

Respect for the individual is one of our core beliefs at Walmart. And the role we play in communities around the country to build a more diverse and inclusive society is more critical than ever as the tragic events in Charlottesville over the weekend painfully reminded us. Our prayers are with the victims and their families.

As we watched the events and the response from President Trump over the weekend, we too felt that he missed a critical opportunity to help bring our country together by unequivocally rejecting the appalling actions of white supremacists. His remarks today were a step in the right direction and we need that clarity and consistency in the future.

Our country is facing some very difficult issues that require our elected officials, business leaders and community-based organizations to work together. Representing a company with the largest and one of the most diverse groups of associates in the U.S., and an even more diverse customer base of tens of millions of customers, we believe we should stay engaged to try to influence decisions in a positive way and help bring people together. I will continue to strongly advocate on behalf of our associates and customers, and urge our elected officials to do their part to promote a more just, tolerant and diverse society.

Thank you for representing Walmart and our values today — and every day.

Ironically, Wal-Mart was known for supporting Trump during his run for presidency.

Wal-Mart gave $150,000 to Trump's inaugural committee, and also sponsored a ball, according to a company spokesman, per the Wall Street Journal.

McMillon said Monday evening that Trump's follow-up comments had been a "step in the right direction," and that the president needs to show that same "clarity and consistency" in the future.

Trump at last condemned white supremacists, two days after what many viewed as a tepid response to deadly violence from the president.

—CNBC's Jacob Pramuk contributed to this report.

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