Trump says Cook told him Apple was expanding. Tim Cook was just asked if it’s true. What did he say?
President Trump made big news this week when he told the Wall Street Journal that Apple, the largest U.S. company known for outsourcing its manufacturing to China, planned to build 3 new U.S. factories.
“I spoke to [Mr. Cook], he’s promised me three big plants—big, big, big,” Mr. Trump said as part of a discussion about business-tax reform and business investment. “I said you know, Tim, unless you start building your plants in this country, I won’t consider my administration an economic success. He called me, and he said they are going forward.”
Those remarks, published Tuesday, have yet to be verified by anyone at Apple. In fact, Apple has declined to comment to every single publication that has followed up asking for confirmation.
With no confirmation or denial, people have been left to speculate. Slate noted that Apple’s continued silence “is Trump’s win.”
Meanwhile, the Wall Street Journal wrote that Trump’s comments must “make it awkward for Apple.”
Ultimately, no one knows if Apple is actually building the factories or not. An earlier dust up between Trump and Cook led to reports that Cook had exaggerated Trump’s remarks about the need for “comprehensive immigration reform.” The White House later clarified that Trump never said what Cook claimed.
Are the promised “big” factories more fake news? There’s no way of knowing until Apple speaks up.
UPDATE: On Apple’s Q3 earnings call, Cook was asked about Trump’s three-factory claim. Cook’s non-answer left observers with more questions than answers:
From the Apple earnings call: Tim Cook declined to discuss Trump's claim that 3 U.S. plants are in the works $AAPL
— Kyle Alspach (@KyleAlspach) August 1, 2017
Analyst to Apple CEO: Can you comment on Trump saying you're building 3 plants?
Cook: Sure. Here are lots of words that aren't related.
— Seth Fiegerman (@sfiegerman) August 1, 2017
Analyst: Are you building 3 plants in the US like Trump said?
Cook: We're teaching kids how to code
— Steve Kovach (@stevekovach) August 1, 2017
Questioner: Hi Tim Cook Trump said you're going to build factories
— Matthew Panzarino (@panzer) August 1, 2017
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