Tim Cook’s visits with Boehner, Reid, and McConnell meant to open line of communication with D.C.

“Apple CEO Tim Cook got barely any notice when he slipped into the Capitol last Tuesday for a handful of meetings with Congressional leaders,” Tory Newmyer reports for Fortune. “The low-key visit was in keeping with the company’s traditional approach to Washington. But the fact that Cook visited at all signals a subtle but significant pivot for the outfit inside the Beltway.”

“For years, Apple has hewed to a studiously hands-off lobbying strategy, flowing from co-founder and longtime CEO Steve Jobs’ aversion to tangling with the policymaking process,” Newmyer reports. “As his successor begins to put his own imprint on the company, however, Cook wants key players in Washington to know they now have an open line to the chief executive in Cupertino.”

“That was the message aides briefed on the meetings said Cook conveyed in sit-downs with House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.),” Newmyer reports. “‘It was an act of opening up a line of communication,’ one aide briefed on a meeting said, ‘but it was a first step in what hopefully will be a growing relationship. They didn’t become best buds in one meeting.'”

Newmyer reports, “For its size, the company maintains an exceedingly modest lobbying footprint, spending only $500,000 on advocacy in the first quarter of the year. Google, by comparison, spent 10 times that amount. And unlike most major companies with a stake in the capital, it has no political action committee to dole out campaign funds to lawmakers. That likely won’t change overnight, but it is clear the Cook era at Apple has announced itself, quietly, in Washington.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Fred Mertz” for the heads up.]

Related article:
Apple CEO Tim Cook meets with U.S. Speaker John Boehner (with photos) – May 15, 2012

45 Comments

    1. Ah, yes, the future will be run by conservatives. Maobama and his slimy cohorts will lose huge this November…..

      Spectacular.

      Liberalism is a brain disorder.

            1. Dear republicans,
              When you think you are being smart by calling people “libtards”, you aren’t. It’s not only stupid, but you come off as really dumb considering your Party starts with “RE”, thus making you “REtards”.

          1. Methinks people who have their tongue up the rear of a Party that starts with “RE” should think twice about attaching “tard” to the other side, when that attachment sounds a whole lot worse when applied to them.

      1. Why is it 99% of you republicans are incapable of an original set of words. Everything you just said, is almost exactly the same really dumb sentence that about 400,000 republicans said before you.

        And actually, what’s really ironic to those who read, is Psychology Today featured a very interesting piece on how conservatism matches a mild form of insanity driven by paranoia, and can be predicted by death fear.

      1. Many on the left have lost any insight into their own bias; nothing Obama says is over the top, and nothing he has done lacks significance or inspiration. Likewise, nothing Romney says or has done amounts to much. By forcing a halo upon Obama, suggesting dark hearts among any who don’t see it and follow, and ignoring the virtues of a decent man like Romney, does not serve the president well. It stirs resentment among voters who chafe at being told to love him or else.

        Ed Rogers, The Washington Post, May 29, 2012

  1. I’m not sure how I feel about this. I kinda like Steve’s approach, but Steve’s approach was definitely more about Steve than Apple. The fact that he didn’t let anyone dictate his path is what stands out to me the most. I hope Tim, as good as he has been, doesn’t compromise this cornerstone ethos at Apple. It doesn’t yet appear that he will, but his latest moves- while prudent- are enough to make one pay closer attention to future actions…

    1. Tim is not Steve. And Steve was not Tim. When Steve got around to getting his autobiography written he chose Isaacson. When Tim gets around to getting his autobiography written, he should collaborate with Leonard “I Am Not Spock” Nimoy.

    1. agreed. But as long as there is one company lobbying, aka butting in, it is a necessary evil. I think Tim knows that possibly better than Steve and will walk the fence as much as possible. I think Steve chose Tim knowing he would do things that Steve was personally not willing to do.

    2. What planet do you live on? If politicians did not tax or regulate, set permits or licenses, impose restrictions, file injunctions, or impart levies on businesses there would be no need to lobby. Besides it’s every citizen’s right to petition and protest.

      1. I don’t like giving my money to corporations, who then turn around and grease the palms of politicians, or donate to some cause I do not believe in (therefore I am vicariously supporting that cause). Corporations should be apolitical.

        1. You don’t like giving money to corporations. Do you live in log cabin in the woods, travel by horseback and dugout canoe grow your own crops, raise your own livestock, make clothes from animal pelts?

          Hey, wait a minute. Did you just post to MDN with your wood burning-powered computer make from obsidian chips? You loser, to have posted your nonsensical rant you have tacitly admitted that you do give money to corporations.

          1. Wow, what trolling a misplaced comma can bring about!

            Let me rephrase: “I don’t like giving my money to corporations who then turn around…”

            1. Apple and hundreds of other corporations have donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to at least one political party. As a person of highest ethical and moral standards I’m sure that you haven’t spent a dime on Apple (or AT&T or Verizon or Honda or Toyota or General Electric or IBM or Samsung or Intel…..).

              Well, have you?

            2. Of course I have. I’m saying I don’t like it that they do. Hence my wish for corporations to be apolitical.

              Reading comprehension, learn it!

            3. You seem compelled to do that on a regular basis that which aggrieves you the most. Obviously, you cannot live according to your high ethical and moral beliefs. Perhaps you should be more forgiving of others considering the the fact that you are unable to behave according to your own rigorous standards. Maybe that will make knowing that your tacitly contributing to your assessment of political “corruption” just a bit easier to live with.

    1. “The house had several owners after the Luce family sold it and before it was bought in 1984 by Mr. Jobs, who also owns a house on an adjoining property. Between 1993 and 2001, President Bill Clinton and his wife Hillary occasionally stayed in the adjacent house, and their Secret Service agents stayed in the Jackling mansion.”

      http://www.almanacnews.com/morgue/2002/2002_02_27.jackling27.html

      Yeah, you let your political enemies stay as house guests repeatedly.
      Conservatards just love to deny history and other things factual.

  2. Lobbying has gotten so endemic it’s the main reason with what’s wrong in Washington. Like having to kiss the don’s hand out of a Godfather movie. We really need to make it illegal. It’s just another word for bribery.

  3. … little to do with “Apple” and a whole lot to do with his own civil rights? “You want Apple to support you, you need to learn to treat me as an equal”. Chew on THAT you orange-skinned alien!

  4. Curious
    He met with the House Teabagger in Chief (BONE-er).
    He met with the closeted Rethugnican Senate Leader “bearded” McConnell.
    He met with the Senate Majority Leader Reid.

    He did NOT meet with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who among the Congressional leadership is from California and is openly supportive of Gay Rights- unlike the Rethiugnicans who like to legislate in the bedrooms of private citizens. In all likelihood Ms Pelosi will be Speaker Pelosi again come January, 2013.

    Is the Alabama Southern Conservatard coming out, or is he just covering his bases? They say you can take the boy out of Alabama, but cannot take Alabama out of the boy.

  5. Boehnerr: “Pleased to see you again, Mr. Cook. Apple’s really taken off like gangbusters, congratulations. So what’s on your mind?”

    Reid: “How would you like to invest some of Apple’s money in couple of federal programs? It’s the patriotic thing to do, you know. You are a good American, right? How much are you willing to invest?”

  6. As far as Cook, his visit to Washington and the lobbying business in general is concerned, this to me looks like a pragmatic and necessary move. Pretty much every single top-100 company in America (and many foreign ones) likely significantly outspends Apple in Washington, D.C. Since high-level corruption in America is legal (they call it lobbying), other companies are buying themselves legislation, and at some point, this will become seriously detrimental to Apple’s business.

    Cook has obviously carefully evaluated where the damage is most likely to come from and approached those who could affect it the most. From a foreigner’s perspective between the two American political parties, it is the Republicans that love doing favours for big businesses (while Democrats do them for labour). When favours are being done to competing businesses, this can seriously impact Apple’s bottom line, as well as their ability to effectively do business and innovate. Just by convening some congressional (or senate) hearings on some purported monopoly abuse (with iTunes, or App Store, or something), Apple would be put in a position to have to waste money and time to defend themselves against some bogus charge.

    While I can’t possibly see Apple ever spending anywhere near what other big businesses spend on lobbying in Washingdon, D.C., I’m sure we’ll see them discretely increasing their presence there. After all, this is still by far the most valued company in the world.

  7. From Wikipedia;

    Liberalism;

    Liberals espouse a wide array of views depending on their understanding of the principles, but generally liberals support ideas such as constitutionalism, liberal democracy, free and fair elections, human rights, capitalism, and the free exercise of religion.

    Conservatism;

    Conservatism is a political and social philosophy that promotes the maintenance of traditional institutions and supports, at the most, minimal and gradual change in society.

    It looks like lot of liberals post their crap on Wikipedia.

    Conservatives, on the other hand, don’t seem to have much influence there.

    1. Instead conservatives come here to spew hatred and waste our time. Conservatives are probably flagged for their vitriol on Wikipedia, so they don’t get a word in that sticks…… unfortunately we don’t have a flag button to quiet their noise.

      1. No, Wikipedia is an extremely liberal biased organization.

        You know you’re not going to get anything close to the truth about conservatism there.

        Liberals are the group spewing hatred and racism everywhere they slither.

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