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Tim Cook may have met with Trump during WWDC to discuss second term priorities

Tim Cook and Donald Trump in a meeting at the White House in 2018

Apple CEO Tim Cook may have left WWDC extremely early on Thursday morning to meet with presidential candidate Donald Trump, in what has been described as a meandering discussion.

The meeting with Trump was reportedly attended by 80 CEOs. However, what has been more news-making is how ex-president and now presidential candidate Trump attempted to make his case to US big business.

The meeting reportedly repeated Trump’s promises of how his intention is to cut taxes for businesses, and pare back business regulations if he is re-elected. No details of how the proposals would be fulfilled were provided.

However, according to multiple reports from CNBC, one on Thursday, and one on Friday, the CEOs did not necessarily walk away with a good impression. Ross Sorkin, one anchor of Squawk Box, reported on what he had heard from some CEOs in attendance.

On Friday morning’s show, Sorkin said that he was told that “[Trump] was remarkably meandering, could not keep a straight thought [and] was all over the map.”

“These were people who I think might have been actually predisposed to [Trump, but] actually walked out of the room less predisposed,” Sorkin added in his report.

At the meeting Trump said he was planning on ending taxation of tips, which was reportedly met with some scorn by the gathered CEOs.

The report on Thursday cites two people who claim that Tim Cook was at the meeting along with Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan, Citigroup CEO Jane Fraser, and JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon. A spokesman for Cook declined to comment on if the Apple CEO attended the meeting.

If the report of Cook’s attendance is accurate, the Apple CEO had an incredible travel turn-around time. Cook was spotted at WWDC on Thursday at assorted events and sessions throughout the day.

Cook and Trump have met several times. The pair have shared several dinners, and also dined together during the World Economic Forum meeting at Davos in January 2020.

Earlier in the Trump presidency, Cook had a call with the then-president in August 2019 explaining why the tariffs would hinder the iPhone’s ability to compete against rivals. It prompted the administration to delay tariffs against the iPhone until later.

That conversation also led to public praise of Cook by Trump as a “great executive,” with the reason “because he calls me and others don’t.”

There have also been times when Cook declined to address matters that Trump brought up, such as the claim from Trump in 2018 that Cook had promised to construct “three big plants, beautiful plants” in the United States. While Cook had discussed manufacturing around that time, he never mentioned three plants, and a trio have not developed since.