The business backlash to Trump follows his lukewarm response to violence at a white nationalist rally over the weekend, where one woman died and 19 people were injured after a car rammed into counterprotesters. On Tuesday, Trump appeared to equate torch-bearing white nationalists with the protesters who demonstrated against them.
"The thinking was it was important to do as a group," said the member of the advisory council. As a panel, not as individuals because it would have more significant impact. It makes a central point that it's not going to go forward. It's done."
The business leaders chose to dissolve the council in order to "condemn" the president's comments about the Charlottesville violence, the member said. The member described Trump's defiant press conference on Tuesday as a "tripwire."
They had heard from employees and customers about the advisory council.
"There really was nothing to debate," the member said.
The Strategic and Policy Forum, led by Schwarzman, featured:
- Paul Atkins, CEO, Patomak Global Partners
- Mary Barra, chairwoman and CEO, General Motors
- Toby Cosgrove, CEO, Cleveland Clinic
- Jamie Dimon, chairman and CEO, JPMorgan Chase
- Larry Fink, chairman and CEO, BlackRock
- Rich Lesser, president and CEO, Boston Consulting Group
- Doug McMillon, president and CEO, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
- Jim McNerney, former chairman, president and CEO, Boeing
- Indra Nooyi, chairwoman and CEO of PepsiCo
- Adebayo "Bayo" Ogunlesi, chairman and managing partner, Global Infrastructure Partners
- Ginni Rometty, chairwoman, president, and CEO, IBM
- Kevin Warsh, Shepard family distinguished visiting fellow in economics, Hoover Institute, former member of the Federal Reserve's board of governors.
- Mark Weinberger, global chairman and CEO, EY
- Jack Welch, former chairman and CEO, General Electric
- Daniel Yergin, Pulitzer Prize winner, vice chairman of IHS Markit
Correction: The headline of this story has been updated to reflect that the Strategic and Policy Forum is separate from the manufacturing council that several business leaders left this week. It is the only council disbanding as of Wednesday afternoon.