White House senior adviser Jared Kushner speaking to leaders of technology companies.
Media-shy Jared Kushner opened his mouth and spoke before cameras as he greeted tech CEOs to the White House Monday. The summit will kick off the White House’s Technology Week, during which time it will pay special attention to technology issues.
The gathering is the first event for a technology-focused effort within the White House Office of American Innovation.
Kushner, who is also Trump’s son-in-law, has been tasked with overseeing several Trump administration initiatives, including brokering peace in the Middle East, revamping the federal government, tackling the opioid epidemic, and heading the Office of American Innovation.
‘So far I have found exactly the opposite, ‘ Kushner said, according to White House pool reports. He also cited some examples of the current technology infrastructure, noting the use of floppy discs in Pentagon “legacy systems”.
Tesla founder Elon Musk and Disney’s Robert Iger, both quit Trump’s high-powered business advisory panel a few weeks ago, after the president pulled the US out of the Paris climate accord. Almost 100 major technology companies_including Facebook, LinkedIn and Intel- also opposed in February the administration’s executive order banning travelers from six Muslim-majority countries. Leaders at Apple and Google were among the American corporate executives who appealed to the president to stay in the pact.
In May, Trump created an “American Technology Council”, the latest in a series of efforts to modernize the USA government.
The meeting with almost 20 chief executives comes as the White House pushes to shrink government, cut federal employees and eliminate regulations. Intel unveiled plans at the Oval Office in February to invest more than $7 billion in an Arizona factory, a move Trump portrayed as a win for US workers.
Following Trump’s June 1 decision to withdraw from the Paris climate accords, Tesla (TSLA.O) Chief Executive Elon Musk and Walt Disney (DIS.N) CEO Robert Iger stepped down from White House advisory panels.
“This requires a six-month review and a rigorous interagency process to approve any changes that can be made on a government website regardless of how minor they are”, he said.
White House spokesman Sean Spicer said the administration was focusing on technology this week.