SAN FRANCISCO — Bill Gates, who has been critical of Donald Trump’s policies in recent months, is scheduled to meet with the president Thursday in the Oval Office.
The meeting, expected to take place in the afternoon, is closed to press, according to the White House schedule. It is unclear what they plan to discuss.
The two met during the transition at Trump Tower and last March at the White House where they discussed a “shared commitment to finding and stopping disease outbreaks around the world.”
Since then, the Trump administration’s policies and the president’s derogatory comments about African countries and Haiti have caused problems for the billionaire philanthropist. Gates could not be immediately reached for comment.
This year Bill Gates and wife Melinda Gates made Trump part of the annual letter they publish about the philanthropic activities of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
In the letter, they addressed 10 tough questions they frequently get. No. 6 was: “How are President Trump’s policies affecting your foundation’s work?”
While remaining optimistic about the pace of global progress, the Microsoft founder told USA TODAY in late January he worried the United States would lose its geopolitical clout if the Trump administration slashed foreign aid, diminishing its role in providing aid to poor countries and allowing rival superpowers such as China to flex their influence overseas.
“I hope we can keep our reputation in a deserved way,” Gates said.
The technology industry has had a frequently tense relationship with the Trump administration on key policy issues such as immigration.
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