Wednesday, 23 August, 2017

Tech Council Including Apple, Amazon, Google Execs Visits White House Today

U.S. President Trump arriives to deliver a speech on US-Cuba relations in Miami Kushner Delivers Speech About Analyzing, Auditing Infrastructure
Howard Terry | 20 June, 2017, 00:42

White House adviser Jared Kushner.

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Google CEO Sundar Pichai, outgoing General Electric CEO Jeff Immelt and Apple's Cook all condemned the move.

The group, which included administration officials, then broke to attend an afternoon of working sessions on topics including big data, citizen services, H-1B visas (for highly skilled foreign workers) and cloud computing.

In May, Trump created an "American Technology Council", the latest in a series of efforts to modernize the US government.

Technology CEOS are expected at the White House Monday for an event focused on modernizing government. Chris Liddell, the White House director of strategic initiatives, is the council's director. Another question deals with machine learning and artificial intelligence (MLAI), asking CEOs to discuss how MLAI can be integrated into government services in the future.

Among his many other responsibilities, Kushner was tapped to lead "a SWAT team of strategic consultants" who are tasked with bringing business ideas to the federal government.

Top White House aide - and presidential son-in-law - Jared Kushner is among the most powerful men in America, but few have heard him speak, until now. He resigned from two of Trump's other advisory councils after the Paris climate decision. Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, is not on the list.

When asked about this issue on a conference call with reporters, a senior administration official who was involved with organizing Monday's event said there was "virtually no fallback" from the president's climate decision. He said there was "a lot of room for optimization in the federal government".

"This is really safe ground", says Stewart Verdery, a lobbyist with Monument Policy Group, which works with Amazon and Microsoft.

In May, Trump asked lawmakers to cut $3.6 trillion in government spending over the next decade, taking aim at healthcare and food assistance programs for the poor in a budget that also boosted spending on defense.

Despite being largely against Trump's positions at the time, there was at least a cautious sense they might be able to work together on issues such as cyber security and job creation.

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