DIMON: I 'strongly disagree' with Trump's Charlottesville reaction and supported disbanding his business council

JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon sent a memo to staff addressing President Donald Trump’s reaction to the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia over the weekend and his participation in the now disbanded Strategic and Policy Forum.

“I strongly disagree with President Trump’s reaction to the events that took place in Charlottesville over the past several days,” Dimon said. “Racism, intolerance and violence are always wrong.”

Dimon also said that Trump’s statement during Tuesday’s press conference, which placed blame on “both sides,” was unacceptable.

“There is no room for equivocation here: the evil on display by these perpetrators of hate should be condemned and has no place in a country that draws its strength from our diversity and humanity,” Dimon said.

There are economic reasons many people in America are anxious, Dimon’s statement said, but “fanning divisiveness is not the answer.”

“Constructive economic and regulatory policies are not enough and will not matter if we do not address the divisions in our country,” Dimon continued. “It is a leader’s role, in business or government, to bring people together, not tear them apart.”

The JPMorgan CEO also said he supported the decision to disband the Strategic and Policy Forum, a collection of CEOs from diverse industries, which included the CEOs from Walmart, General Motors, IBM, and others.

“Today, the members of the President’s Strategic and Policy Forum agree to disband,” Dimon wrote. “The group put out its own statement. But I also want you to understand why I personally supported this decision and how strongly I feel about these issues.”

According to reports, the forum members decided to disband during a group conference call and then informed the White House. Following their decision, but prior to a public statement, Trump took credit on Twitter for scrapping the forum, along with a separate manufacturing council.

A series of members on the manufacturing council defected from the group over the past three days, leading to the Forum and Trump’s decision.

Here is the full statement from Dimon:

“I strongly disagree with President Trump’s reaction to the events that took place in Charlottesville over the past several days. Racism, intolerance and violence are always wrong. The equal treatment of all people is one of our nation’s bedrock principles. There is no room for equivocation here: the evil on display by these perpetrators of hate should be condemned and has no place in a country that draws strength from our diversity and humanity.

As a company and for all business in general, it is critical that we help develop rational, intelligent policies to help expand opportunities for all of our citizens. I know that times are tough for many. The lack of economic growth and opportunity has led to deep and understandable frustration among so many Americans. But fanning divisiveness is not the answer. Constructive economic and regulatory policies are not enough and will not matter if we do not address the divisions in our country. It is a leader’s role, in business or government, to bring people together, not tear them apart.

Today, the members of the President’s Strategic and Policy Forum agree to disband. The group put out its own statement. But I also want you to understand why I personally supported this decision and how strongly I feel about these issues.

I’m very proud of the 250,000 people working here at JPMorgan Chase. I see your values every day – in how you treat your clients, your communities and each other. I am proud to see so many of you leading by example and not losing sight of the core principles which made our country great. I stand with you.”

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