Breaking a tradition of contributing towards presidential conventions of both parties, Apple will not support Republicans this time because of its unease with Donald Trump.
The Cupertino, California-based company has not officially announced its decision, but unidentified officials confirmed it to multiple US media outlets.
While Trump has attacked Apple for its production facilities in China, vowing to bring them back to the US, the company is more troubled by his racist and bigoted remarks.
It joins Hewlett-Packard, the other IT giant whose CEO Meg Whitman has compared Trump to Hitler and Mussolini, in refusing to support the Republican convention.
Apple’s help, as that of Microsoft and Google, which are all backing both conventions, may not amount to much in itself — Apple products worth $140,000 in 2008.
But the optics of it will be troubling for the Republican Party, which is struggling to come to grips with their nominee and his bitterly divisive remarks on race, religion and all in between.
Other companies that have decided to not sponsor the Republican convention include JP Morgan Chase and Ford Motors, according to a Bloomberg report.
It’s a standard practice for many US companies to contribute towards both conventions through resources and products, without seeming to be taking sides. But 2016 will be different.
Trump, who likes to flaunt his private sector experience and friends, and who is usually quick to respond to slights and put-downs, had not responded till late Sunday.
The real-estate magnate has been struggling lately with his own party’s continuing misgivings about him, alternating between seeking its help and claiming he will be fine by himself.
On Saturday, he sought help, telling supporters at a rally, “I’m raising a lot of money for the Republican Party, and a lot of beneficiaries, and I like doing it – but we have to have help”.
“You know, life is like a two-way street, right? It’s a two-way street. So that’s it. Otherwise, I’ll just keep doing what I’m doing. I’ll just keep funding my own campaign.”
His poll numbers, which he also likes to boast about on campaigns trail, have been tanking — un-favourability hit a record 70% high this week — adding to his woes.
A narrative is gaining ground that Trump has squandered away the advantage he had over Hillary Clinton, having wrapped up his nominating contests almost five weeks before her.
And now, Apple.