Loyal to Trump for Years, Manufacturing Group Now Calls for His Removal
Manufacturers parted ways with Mr. Trump on immigration policy and especially trade, and opposed the tariffs that Mr. Trump had introduced from 2018. That year, however, the gap widened significantly.
In the spring, Mr. Trump appointed Mr. Timmons to an industry group to advise the administration on safely reopening the economy in the pandemic. But in April, Mr Timmons discharged himself on Facebook and in an interview about protesters pushing for a quick reopening when many manufacturers struggled to secure personal protective equipment for their workers.
Mr Trump encouraged the protests and called for government activity restrictions to be lifted, but at the time Mr Timmons declined to criticize him publicly. “I won’t go into that,” he said. “I will use my platform to say what I think is right and what I think is good for my manufacturing workers.”
The club congratulated Mr Biden after the election was called in his favor. Almost two weeks later, it issued a statement calling on federal officials to identify Mr Biden as elected president and initiate the formal transfer of power. On Jan. 4, the group condemned efforts by Trump and Republicans in Congress to question the certification of the Biden victory. Each of these publications was followed by extensive discussions between members of the management team.
The release on Wednesday did not include the same debate. Mr Timmons said the attacks on the Capitol were against the association’s core values. When rioters stormed the Capitol, the association’s employees called for a zoom, compiled the statement and published it that afternoon.
“Vice President Pence, who has been evacuated from the Capitol, should seriously consider working with the Cabinet to take advantage of the 25th Democratic Amendment,” it said. “This is not the vision of America that manufacturers believe in and work so hard to defend.”
Many members of the Executive Committee either did not comment or did not say whether they supported the association’s statement when asked. The committee includes representatives from some of America’s best-known companies, including Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, Toyota, Dow Inc., Caterpillar, Goodyear Tire, and Emerson Electric. Some of the companies published their own statements about the invasion but did not publicly say whether they supported the trade group’s statement.