Breakfast Briefing: Sard Verbinnen names former RNC chair to lead public affairs practice

Sard Verbinnen has named former Republican National Committee chair Ed Gillespie as the chairman of its just-launched Washington public affairs practice. Gillespie won the Republican nomination for governor in Virginia last year, but lost in the general election (New York Times).

Mastercard has ended its international Goals for Meals campaign after a backlash. The company promised to donate 10,000 meals to children in Latin America and the Caribbean each time soccer stars Lionel Messi or Neymar Jr. scored until 2020. However, several critics said the push was in poor taste, with one soccer journalist accusing it of “turning the World Cup into the hunger games.”

Super photo op cancelled. President Donald Trump nixed the Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles’ visit to the White House planned for Tuesday (Business Insider). Trump tweeted on Tuesday morning that the ceremony will still take place, just without the players. (Awkward!) Fewer than 10 members of the team were planning to attend (NYT), and nearly all of the Eagles’ black players were set to boycott the event (ESPN).

Speaking of the president’s use of Twitter, the Justice Department has appealed a court ruling that stated he cannot block followers based on their political views. The seven plaintiffs in the lawsuit that prompted the original ruling have been unblocked by the president’s account (Reuters).

Apple CEO Tim Cook has pushed back against a New York Times report on Facebook sharing data with mobile device makers, a day after Facebook did so. Cook repeated his company’s line that “we’ve never been in the data business” (NPR). Apple dedicated part of the WWDC event on Monday to “time well spent,” or cutting down on wasted smartphone time (Recode).


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