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Apple Spent $7 Million in 2017 Lobbying the U.S. Government Over Encryption, Immigration, and More

A new report out today by Recode examined how major technology companies spent a record amount of money lobbying the United States government in 2017, over issues like net neutrality, encryption, immigration, and more. In total, Apple, Amazon, Facebook, and Google spent about $50 million lobbying the government last year, and of that Apple alone spent $7 million. Apple CEO Tim Cook attending an executive tech summit at Trump Tower in 2016 Apple's spending on lobbying grew from just over $4 million in 2014 to about $4.5 million in 2015 and 2016, before greatly increasing to $7 million in 2017. In terms of lobbying, this was a record spending amount for the company, and Apple's areas of focus were said to have been encryption and immigration. The last time Apple's lobbying amount emerged was in July 2017, when it was reported that Apple spent $2.2 million lobbying the government between April 1 and June 30, 2017. Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Google cumulatively racked up a roughly $50 million tab fighting off President Donald Trump and an onslaught of new federal regulations last year — a reflection that the tech industry is increasingly under political siege in the nation’s capital. And Apple shelled out $7 million — again, more than ever — to lobby the U.S. government over the same period. The iPhone giant continued to press forward on issues like encryption and immigration. And the company — like the rest of the industry — advocated for the tax reform law recently signed by Trump. For the other companies, Google spent the most at more than $18 million in lobbying

Apple and Other Companies Fear 'Looming End' of H-1B Work Visa Spousal Protection Program

Apple, Google, Facebook, Microsoft, and other technology companies have sent a message to the Trump administration through various Washington, D.C. lobbying groups, urging President Trump to keep protecting spouses of immigrants who work in the U.S. with H-1B visas. The companies reportedly fear a "looming end" to the program that protects these spouses and allows them to work in the U.S., as it could cause "immense trouble" for many of their workers and potentially lead to large swaths of H-1B employees having to "reconsider working for U.S. companies at all" (via Recode). The spousal work permit program began in 2015 under the Obama administration, allowing spouses of high-skilled immigrants to be granted work authorizations while in the process of seeking lawful permanent resident status. The Trump administration has worked throughout 2017 to fundamentally reevaluate the program, and in November the Department of Homeland Security noted imminent plans to "propose to rescind" the final rule and remove H-4 dependent spouses "from the class of aliens eligible for employment authorization." Apple CEO Tim Cook attending an executive tech summit at Trump Tower in 2016 Now, a coalition of tech companies have responded with a statement, noting that spouses are "eager to work" to support their families. Their statement also describes fear of an "increased risk" of losing long-term employees. “We represent employers who are committed to growing the U.S. economy and creating jobs for American workers. However, we cannot achieve these goals unless companies can recruit

Tim Cook Says 250 Apple Employees Are 'Dreamers' as Donald Trump's Decision on DACA Nears

Apple CEO Tim Cook on Sunday tweeted that Apple employs 250 so-called "dreamers," or individuals who were brought to the United States at a young age when their parents or guardians illegally immigrated to the country. Image: Nicholas Kamm/Associated Free Press/Getty Images "I stand with them," said Cook. "They deserve our respect as equals and a solution rooted in American values." 250 of my Apple coworkers are #Dreamers. I stand with them. They deserve our respect as equals and a solution rooted in American values.— Tim Cook (@tim_cook) September 3, 2017 Cook's tweet comes shortly before U.S. President Donald Trump is expected to announce whether he will end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) immigration program as he promised. Last week, Cook and around 300 other business leaders signed an open letter urging Trump to preserve the program, and to pass the bipartisan DREAM Act or similar legislation as a permanent solution. DACA allows many illegal immigrants who entered the United States at age 16 or under to receive a renewable two-year period of deferred action from deportation, and eligibility for a work permit in the country. The program was created by way of an executive order signed by former President Barack Obama in 2012. Trump vowed to end DACA during his presidential campaign, but he later admitted it would be a tough decision. Trump said young individuals enrolled in the program will be treated with "great heart." If the program is ended, nearly 800,000 undocumented young individuals that fall under its protections would have

Apple CEO Tim Cook and Other Leaders Sign Letter Asking Trump to Protect DACA Program

Hundreds of chief executive officers, chief operating officers, chairmen, presidents, and other business leaders have added their signatures to an open letter asking President Trump to preserve the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. The program protects young adults brought illegally into the U.S. -- called "Dreamers" -- and grants them the "basic opportunity to work and study without the threat of deportation," through the opportunity of gaining legal work permits (via Recode). Signatories include Apple CEO Tim Cook, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Google CEO Sundar Pichai, Emerson Collective President Laurene Powell Jobs, and many more. Trump is expected to announce a policy change today in regards to DACA, where it's believed that under the new policy the government will cease granting work permits to new Dreamers entering the U.S. Current Dreamers will reportedly be able to stay in the country until their permits run out, but would then find themselves unable to renew their work authorizations. That would allow the nearly 800,000 individuals currently protected under DACA to remain in the U.S. for around two years, but the new letter implores Trump and the U.S. government to preserve DACA entirely. Unless we act now to preserve the DACA program, all 780,000 hardworking young people will lose their ability to work legally in this country, and every one of them will be at immediate risk of deportation. Our economy would lose $460.3 billion from the national GDP and $24.6 billion in

Apple CEO Tim Cook Evades Questions on Alleged Plans to Build Three 'Big' U.S. Factories

Last week, United States President Donald Trump told The Wall Street Journal that Apple had plans to build three "big, big, big" manufacturing plants in the United States, a statement that allegedly came from Apple CEO Tim Cook. Unsurprisingly, Cook was questioned about the president's statement during the question and answer portion of today's earnings call, and he deftly dodged it by highlighting Apple's overall efforts to increase jobs in the United States. Apple CEO Tim Cook at the Executive Tech Summit at Trump Tower in December of 2016 Cook said Apple has created two million jobs in the United States, across three separate categories. The first, responsible for about 2/3rds of those jobs, is the App Store and the Apple developer community. Cook said Apple is making an enormous effort in this area by encouraging children and college students to get into coding through Swift-based curriculum that's been introduced in schools around the world. The second category, according to Cook, is Apple's manufacturing purchases. Last year, Apple purchased $50 billion in goods and services from U.S. based suppliers, and has been aiming to increase that. Apple in May announced a $1 billion Advanced Manufacturing Fund meant to encourage innovation among U.S.-based manufacturers. Corning became the first recipient of the fund in mid-May, and Cook says the money will be used to expand the company's Kentucky plant to make innovative glass. "There are several plants that can benefit from having some investment to grow, expand, or set up ship in the U.S. for the first

Tim Cook and Other Leaders Contacted by Trump Administration for STEM Education Advice

Members of the Trump administration have begun contacting technology, education, and business leaders to ask for advice on "shaping funding approaches" for education related to science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) in United States schools (via Bloomberg). Ivanka Trump is said to be involved in the effort, along with the president's special assistant for technology initiatives, Reed Cordish. The two members of the Trump administration held an hour-long conference call with these politicians, educators, and CEOs on Wednesday, including Apple CEO Tim Cook and Laurene Powell Jobs, with Trump and Cordish specifically asking for advice regarding STEM education in public schools. Not much else is known about the White House's conference call, but the STEM effort is said to be in the "beginning stages," with more outreach to experts expected to follow soon. White House officials including Ivanka Trump have begun an outreach campaign to major technology, business and education leaders including Laurene Powell Jobs and Apple’s Tim Cook for advice on shaping funding approaches to science, technology, engineering and math education in U.S. public schools. The effort is in its beginning stages with more outreach expected to follow, and the administration has not yet settled on details about funding or timetables for the effort, according to one of the people who discussed the call. Others reached out to for the conference call included Lockheed Martin CEO Marillyn Hewson, Accenture North America CEO Julie Sweet, Microsoft President Brad Smith, Arkansas Governor

Apple Plans to Build Three 'Big' Factories in the United States

Apple is planning to build three "big, big, big" manufacturing plants in the United States, Apple CEO Tim Cook reportedly told U.S. President Donald Trump. The news was shared by Trump in an interview with The Wall Street Journal. Apple CEO Tim Cook at the Executive Tech Summit at Trump Tower in December of 2016 Cook is said to have promised to build "three big plants, beautiful plants," but little additional information is available. What those plants will manufacture is unclear, as is their potential location."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."Apple representatives declined to provide clarification on Trump's statement. Apple has been investigating manufacturing in the United States since Trump said "we're going to get Apple to start building their damn computers and things in this country instead of other countries," during a campaign speech at Virginia's Liberty University in 2016. At the time, Trump threatened to introduce a 45 percent tax on products imported from China. Following pressure from Trump, Apple reportedly asked its suppliers Foxconn and Pegatron to look into making iPhones in the United States. While Pegatron declined, Foxconn is planning to build a TFT-LCD factory in the United States, with the latest rumors suggesting the company

Apple Has Spent Record $2.2 Million Lobbying Trump Administration Over Past Three Months

Apple spent an all-time high $2.2 million lobbying Donald Trump's federal government between April 1 and June 30, 2017, according to a disclosure form filed by the Office of the Clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives. Image: Drew Angerer—Getty Images That amount is by far the most Apple has ever spent on lobbying in a single quarter, eclipsing the previous record of nearly $1.4 million spent during Trump's first three months as President of the United States. Apple has now spent nearly $3.6 million on lobbying during the first six months of his term. The extra $800,000 that Apple spent between April 1 and June 30 of this year, compared to January 1 to March 31, is its largest ever quarter-over-quarter increase in lobbying expenses. Apple had never increased its lobbying spending by more than $330,000 from one quarter to the next before now. Apple's surge in spending is perhaps no surprise, as the company has disagreed with Trump on a number of fundamental issues, ranging from his temporary immigration ban to withdrawing from the Paris climate agreement. "There are clearly areas where we're not nearly on the same page," said Tim Cook, Apple CEO, in a recent interview with Bloomberg Businessweek. Nonetheless, Cook has showed a willingness to work with Trump so far. By comparison, Apple spent $1.12 million lobbying between April 1 and June 30 of 2016, the final year of Barack Obama's administration, meaning it has nearly doubled its spending in just one year. Apple spent around $730,000 during the first six months of Obama's presidency, according to 2009 di

Tim Cook and Other CEOs Meeting With Trump Today to Discuss Using Tech to Reduce Government Spending [Updated]

Apple CEO Tim Cook and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos are among a group of technology leaders meeting with President Donald Trump at the White House today, with plans to discuss how the government can begin cutting waste and improving services. The Trump administration believes there is an "economic opportunity" to save as much as $1 trillion over the next ten years, and is seeking the advice of a group of tech CEOs on the best way to reduce government spending through technology (via Reuters). Methods looked at by the Trump administration are said to include cutting government information technology costs, reducing government costs through improved IT services, leveraging government buying power, and reducing fraud across government agencies. President Donald Trump will meet with the chief executives of technology companies including Apple Inc and Amazon.com Inc on Monday as the White House looks to the private sector for help in cutting government waste and improving services. White House officials said on a conference call on Friday that the administration believed there was an "economic opportunity" to save up to $1 trillion over 10 years by significantly cutting government information technology costs, reducing government costs through improved IT, leveraging government buying power and cutting fraud across government agencies. The meeting with nearly 20 chief executives comes as the White House pushes to shrink government, cut federal employees and eliminate regulations. Many business executives are eager to work with the new administration as they face

Tim Cook Talks HomePod, AR, and How America is 'More Important Than Bloody Politics' in New Interview

Bloomberg Businessweek sat down with Apple CEO Tim Cook last week to discuss a collection of topics related to Apple and the tech industry, including augmented reality, the legacy that Steve Jobs left behind, the HomePod, and the opinions he has following his work with U.S. President Donald Trump. Bloomberg Businessweek's full interview with Tim Cook will appear in the Sunday, June 19 edition of the magazine, but for now the site has shared a few interesting snippets from the talk. One of the major talking points of the interview centered around the HomePod, Apple's new Siri-based speaker for the home that the company says will have a focus on high quality audio playback. When asked whether or not he thinks people will actually pay $349 for a HomePod, Cook pointed out the same question that gets brought up heading into the launch of every new Apple product. Image via Bloomberg Businessweek If you remember when the iPod was introduced, a lot of people said, “Why would anybody pay $399 for an MP3 player?” And when iPhone was announced, it was, “Is anybody gonna pay”—whatever it was at that time—“for an iPhone?” The iPad went through the same thing. We have a pretty good track record of giving people something that they may not have known that they wanted. When I was growing up, audio was No. 1 on the list of things that you had to have. You were jammin’ out on your stereo. Audio is still really important in all age groups, not just for kids. We’re hitting on something people will be delighted with. It’s gonna blow them away. It’s gonna rock the house. The main iOS

Apple CEO Tim Cook to Attend White House for Kushner-Led Tech Summit

Apple CEO Tim Cook will visit the White House later this month for the first meeting of U.S. President Donald Trump's American Technology Council, a report revealed on Thursday. Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella are also expected to be in attendance, but Facebook has not yet responded to its invitation to the event. The meeting, which was formed as part of an effort to modernize government technology and digital services, will include a gathering of top executives followed by smaller sessions on specific topics, such as technology sales to government agencies and cloud computing, according to Bloomberg. The council will be led by Trump's son-in-law and senior advisor Jared Kushner and will be attended by government officials including the U.S. chief technology officer, said people with knowledge of the matter. Eleven companies have been invited to participate in the June 19 summit, . The meeting comes just a few weeks after Cook and Nadella publicly criticized the Trump administration for its decision to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement. Technology companies including Apple, Microsoft, Google, and Facebook have also been critical of a proposed U.S. travel ban on passengers from majority-Muslim countries, with the companies being among 97 that filed a legal brief in February opposing the ban. Trump held a roundtable discussion with tech executives in December, before his inauguration. The meeting focused on jobs, trade, immigration, and China relations. Afterwards, industry leaders said an area of broad agreement was the

Apple CEO Tim Cook: Trump's Decision to Withdraw From Paris Accord 'Was Wrong for Our Planet'

Apple CEO Tim Cook this afternoon sent an email to Apple employees expressing his disappointment with U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to pull out of the Paris climate deal. In the email, which was shared by BuzzFeed, Cook says that while he tried to persuade Trump to keep the United States in the agreement, "it wasn't enough." Cook goes on to reiterate Apple's commitment to reducing its environmental impact through renewable energy and an eventual closed-loop supply chain.Team, I know many of you share my disappointment with the White House's decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris climate agreement. I spoke with President Trump on Tuesday and tried to persuade him to keep the U.S. in the agreement. But it wasn't enough. Climate change is real and we all share a responsibility to fight it. I want to reassure you that today's developments will have no impact on Apple's efforts to protect the environment. We power nearly all of our operations with renewable energy, which we believe is an example of something that's good for our planet and makes good business sense as well. We will keep working toward the ambitious goals of a closed-loop supply chain, and to eventually stop mining new materials altogether. Of course, we're going to keep working with our suppliers to help them do more to power their businesses with clean energy. And we will keep challenging ourselves to do even more. Knowing the good work that we and countless others around the world are doing, there are plenty of reasons to be optimistic about our planet's future. Our

Apple CEO Tim Cook Urges U.S. President to Stay in Paris Climate Pact

Amid rumors suggesting U.S. President Donald Trump plans to withdraw the United States from the Paris climate agreement, multiple tech CEOs have been urging him not to do so, reports Bloomberg. On Tuesday, Apple CEO Tim Cook called the White House to ask the president not to abandon the agreement, which is a 195-nation pact committed to cutting down on greenhouse gas emissions and reducing global warming. Under the terms of the pact, the United States commits to reducing carbon emissions by 26 to 28 percent over the course of the next decade. Apple CEO Tim Cook at the Executive Tech Summit at Trump Tower in December of 2016 Trump, who said he opposes "draconian climate rules" during his presidential campaign, announced this morning that he would make his decision on the accord "over the next few days." Officials who spoke to the New York Times said a decision has not yet been made, but Trump is expected to withdraw on the grounds that the accord would harm the economy and impact job creation in areas like Appalachia and the West. I will be announcing my decision on the Paris Accord over the next few days. MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 31, 2017 A senior White House official cautioned that the specific language of the president's expected announcement was still in flux Wednesday morning. The official said the withdrawal might be accompanied by legal caveats that will shape the impact of Mr. Trump's decision.Over the course of the last several years, Apple has become increasingly committed to reducing its environmental impact and

Apple Raises $7 Billion in Debt Ahead of Trump's Proposed Tax Holiday

Apple has raised $7 billion in debt in a six-part bond sale, according to the company's final pricing term sheet filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission today. The fixed and floating notes mature between 2020 and 2027. Apple said it entered 2017 with $256.8 billion in cash and marketable securities, but approximately 93 percent of that amount is held outside of the United States. Those foreign reserves would be subject to up to a 35 percent corporate tax rate if repatriated, so Apple turns to the debt markets to raise money at a cheaper cost. Apple will use the $7 billion raised to continue funding dividend payments and share buybacks. Apple expanded its share repurchase authorization by an additional $50 billion this week, and the company says it expects to spend a total $300 billion in cash under its capital return program through March 2019. Apple also typically puts the money towards operational expenses, repayment of earlier debt, and acquisitions of other companies. Then there's Apple's new $1 billion advanced manufacturing fund announced by CEO Tim Cook earlier this week, which will need to be funded eventually as well. Apple may not have to raise as much through debt markets in the future, as U.S. President Donald Trump has expressed his desire for a tax holiday that would allow domestic companies to repatriate foreign cash at a discounted tax rate. Reports have suggested the rate could be as low as 10 percent. Interestingly, unlike many of Apple's recent bond offerings, today's sale does not include any notes with 30-year maturities.

Trump Administration Delivers on H-1B Visa Overhaul, Affecting Tech Companies Hiring Foreign Talent

Apple and other technology companies in Silicon Valley will now find it more difficult to bring foreign workers into the U.S. through the H-1B work visa program, thanks to the Trump administration's follow-through of one immigration-related "America first" promise. In January, the administration drafted an executive order outlining an overhaul of various work visa programs, including H-1B, that tech companies use to hire integral employees from outside the U.S. The original draft proposal stated that tech companies relying on foreign hiring did not serve "the U.S. national interest," and now the Trump administration has rolled out a collection of policy shifts to begin pivoting the program to better serve American workers (via Bloomberg). The changes began last Friday when the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services agency "made it harder" for tech companies to bring foreign workers to the U.S. using the H-1B work visa. This week, both the USCIS and the Justice Department issued memos outlining a rallying of support for the new administration's focus on American workers who have the same skills as foreign workers. Allegations against the H-1B work visa program point towards tech companies abusing the cheaper cost of foreign workers as a money saving measure, which the USCIS has repeatedly referred to as "fraud and abuse" in its new memo. The Justice Department has warned employers "not to discriminate against U.S. workers," and is readying investigative plans that will "vigorously prosecute" any company who is reported to violate the new rules. The Justice

Apple Reiterates Commitment to Obama Era Climate Pledge

Apple has said it will honor the commitment it made under the Obama administration to fight climate change, regardless of actions by President Trump to dismantle his predecessor's environmental policies (via Bloomberg). Back in April 2016, Apple, Amazon, Google, and Microsoft filed an amicus brief in support of the Environmental Protection Agency's Clean Power Plan, which aimed to cut carbon pollution produced by power generators, despite pushback from energy companies. Earlier this week, Trump signed an order telling the EPA to rescind the Clean Power Plan and reconsider all Obama era climate rules, including those relating to building leases and oil pipelines. In response to Trump's order, Apple, Amazon, Google and Microsoft issued a joint statement signaling their continued determination to cut energy costs and address the risks posed by climate change to future business growth. "We believe that strong clean energy and climate policies, like the Clean Power Plan, can make renewable energy supplies more robust and address the serious threat of climate change while also supporting American competitiveness, innovation, and job growth," the companies said in a joint statement after Trump's order was signed.Procter & Gamble, Nestle, Ikea, Levi Strauss & Co., and Best Buy, which all signed the 2015 pledge organized by the Obama administration, also said they still intended to honor their commitments. The pledges comes despite support for Trump's order from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which called it "vital to stimulating economic growth". The group argues that

Apple Not Listed on New Legal Brief Opposing Trump's Second Travel Ban

Apple, Microsoft, Netflix, Facebook, Twitter, Google, and more than 60 other companies have either decided not to sign, or have yet to sign, a new legal brief filed in federal court in Hawaii this week, constituting the makings of a lawsuit looking to block the second version of President Donald Trump's travel ban (via Reuters). Trump referred to the new order as a "watered-down version" of the original, but a federal judge in Hawaii nevertheless blocked the revised order. Over a month ago, Apple joined 100 U.S. companies in support of a legal brief that opposed the first immigration ban. That order banned Syrian refugees from entering the United States, blocked citizens of seven countries (Iraq, Iran, Somalia, Sudan, Libya, Syria, and Yemen) from entering the U.S. for 90 days, and suspended entry of all refugees entering the U.S. for 120 days. The new ban removed Iraq from the list, exempted green card and visa holders, and toned down "contentious language referring to religious minorities." On Tuesday, a new legal brief was filed in a Hawaiian court on behalf of 58 total Silicon Valley companies voicing support for the state's blocking of Trump's order, down from 127 companies on the first brief. A few companies mentioned on the new opposition brief include Kickstarter, Airbnb, and Dropbox. Although the current list is small, hope for the lawsuit to succeed is growing, and New York lawyer Robert Atkins -- who co-authored the new brief -- said "we do expect the group to expand." Apple Inc, Alphabet Inc's Google and Facebook Inc are among more than 60 technology

Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao Says Trump Administration Will Be 'Catalyst' for Self-Driving Tech

In a bid to reassess self-driving car guidances following the Obama administration, the Trump administration's newly appointed Transportation Secretary, Elaine Chao, said this weekend that she is reviewing the guidances while urging companies "to explain the benefits of automated vehicles to a skeptical public." Chao said that there's a lot at stake in improving and regulating the technology, and ensuring that passengers are safe when they use the new self-driving systems (via Reuters). The guidances referenced by the Obama administration asked carmakers to voluntarily detail each of their self-driving systems by using a 15-point "safety assessment" precaution. Most regulations were also urged to be looked at by the federal government and taken out of the hands of the states. As a new administration approached last November, automakers concerned about the guidelines -- citing a need to give up "significant data" and likely facing months-long delays in testing -- asked the incoming Trump staff to re-evaluate. Google tests out its "Waymo" self-driving technology Earlier in February, automakers faced Congress to request a few legislative changes that they hoped would "speed self-driving cars to U.S. roads." According to Chao, the Trump administration will do everything it can to be "a catalyst" for the industry and not become a blockade to progress in self-driving vehicles. Chao's thesis hit on asking Silicon Valley companies to first and foremost figure out a way to "educate a skeptical public" about why self-driving cars would be a good thing in the first place. "Thi

Foxconn Gives Sharp the Lead on $7 Billion U.S. Manufacturing Plant

Following weeks of reports and speculation on the potential opening of a United States-based factory built by Apple suppliers Foxconn and Sharp, a report from Reuters today states that Sharp is "taking the lead" on a $7 billion plant in the U.S. that was initially outlined by parent company Foxconn. The plant will break ground sometime in the first half of 2017. The timing of the news coincides with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's incoming meeting with President Donald Trump, the driving force behind the recent glut of U.S. iPhone manufacturing news. In a phone call with Apple CEO Tim Cook in December, Trump said it will be a "real achievement" for his Presidency when he gets Apple to shift device manufacturing stateside. A decision by Foxconn to give Sharp the lead would come as Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe prepares to travel to the United States to meet U.S. President Donald Trump, who in his inauguration speech vowed to put "America first". In a package Tokyo hopes will please Trump, Abe will unveil investments to create as many as 700,000 U.S. jobs, people familiar with the matter told Reuters earlier. Abe will visit Trump at his private Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida over the weekend, where the two leaders will play golf, following a meeting on Friday in Washington. Sharp previously cited interest in building U.S. plants for LCD panel construction for TV sets and home appliances. Foxconn's rumored U.S. plans are more closely aligned with Apple through a proposed $7 billion joint investment with the Cupertino company, which would potentially lead

Apple Joins Nearly 100 U.S. Firms to File Legal Brief Opposing Trump's Immigration Ban

Apple has joined 96 other companies in filing a legal brief opposing President Donald Trump's executive order on immigration, Bloomberg reported on Monday. Other technology companies named in the amicus brief include Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Netflix, Snap, Uber, Twitter, and Intel, with consumer goods companies like Levi Strauss and Chobani also named in the brief. Amazon wasn't listed, with the company's CEO Jeff Bezos already backing the original lawsuit brought by Washington state's attorney general that brought a temporary halt to the immigration ban on Friday. The brief was filed late Sunday in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, highlighting the importance of immigrants to the economy and for society as a whole, and arguing the unlawfulness of the ban. According to the report, the filing of the brief was originally planned later this week, but the companies involved accelerated efforts over the weekend following other legal challenges to the order. "The Order represents a significant departure from the principles of fairness and predictability that have governed the immigration system of the United States for more than fifty years," the brief stated. "Immigrants or their children founded more than 200 of the companies on the Fortune 500 list." "Immigrants make many of the Nation's greatest discoveries, and create some of the country's most innovative and iconic companies. America has long recognized the importance of protecting ourselves against those who would do us harm. But it has done so while maintaining our fundamental commitment to welcoming