Apple has told GOP leadership that it will not be donating technology or cash to the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, as it has done in past years. Apple is the first Silicon Valley heavy-hitter to do so—Facebook, Microsoft, and Google have all pledged some financial support to the RNC.
In 2008, Apple donated about $140,000-worth of MacBooks and other products to the Republican and Democratic conventions, according to campaign finance records. Apple did not send free merch to the 2012 conventions, because that year the Democrats announced a ban on corporate financing of its nominating events.
But this year, Apple’s reason for withholding funds is definitely the GOP’s presumptive nominee, Donald Trump. According to Politico, Apple cited the dangerous and derogatory remarks Trump has made about women, immigrants, and minorities, when explaining to Republican leaders why it would not be aiding the party’s convention.
Tony Romm noted in his report for Politico that tensions between Trump and tech companies (and particularly Apple) have been brewing for a while:
Apple’s political stand against Trump, communicated privately to Republicans, is a sign of the widening tensions between Silicon Valley and the GOP’s bombastic presumptive nominee. Trump has trained his rhetorical fire on the entire tech industry, but he’s singled out Apple for particular criticism—calling for a boycott of the company’s products, and slamming CEO Tim Cook over Apple’s stance on encryption.
In March, the New York Times reported that several corporations, including Google, Walmart and Apple were assessing whether they should “scale down” their contributions to this year’s RNC due to Trump’s raging bigotry.
It’s customary for the tech industry not to be partisan when it comes to funding party conventions, and it’s not yet clear how Apple plans to participate, if at all, in the Democratic National Convention.