Apple is leaning on an in depth ally of Donald Trump to assist it keep away from tariffs on iPhone components and different merchandise. A lobbying registration type first found by CNBC signifies that Apple has employed Jeffery Miller to foyer on its behalf in Washington.
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In response to the doc, Apple will depend on Miller and his group to deal with “trade issues as they relate to technological goods and services.”
Miller has shut ties to Trump and the remainder of his administration. He served because the vice finance chairman of Trump’s inaugural committee, then grew to become a prime fundraiser.
Compared to different Silicon Valley firms, Apple spends a comparatively small quantity on Washington lobbying yearly. It’s unclear, nevertheless, how a lot Apple can pay Miller and the remainder of his group for this spherical of lobbying.
Apple has spent greater than $5.5 million on lobbying efforts all through 2019, in keeping with the nonpartisan Heart for Responsive Politics. Most of these funds have gone towards paying their very own in-house lobbyists, however it has tapped 4 different companies outdoors the corporate for assist this yr.
Apple may very well be hit by one other spherical of tariffs as quickly as subsequent month, until the US and China come to an settlement that ends the continuing commerce battle. Apple has already requested the Workplace of the US Commerce Consultant for exemptions on Apple Watch, iPhone components, and extra.
In the meantime, Trump and Tim Cook dinner are expected to make a trip to Austin together as quickly as subsequent week. Reviews counsel that the 2 will tour the amenities in Austin the place merchandise just like the Mac Professional are made.
Cook dinner and Trump have developed a close relationship over the previous three years, with the Trump administration counting on Cook dinner for enterprise and commerce recommendation. Trump has praised Cook for being a “great executive,” saying the Apple CEO all the time “calls Donald Trump directly” when there’s an issue.
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