According to a report from The New York Post, Marvel CEO Ike Perlmutter is going to officially join President Elect Donald Trump's staff as an advisor for Veterans' Affairs. Perlmutter, who donated heavily to Trump's campaign, recently met with the President Elect at Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach Florida, resulting in the first photo of the reclusive Marvel billionaire in decades. Perlmutter's wife, Laura, also serves on Trump's inauguration committee.
Before building his Toy Biz fortune and becoming the leader of Marvel, Perlmutter fought in the Israeli army during the Six Day War. The Perlmutters have also engaged in philanthropic work with hospitals, including donating $50 million to NYU's Langone Medical Center, resulting in the university naming the center's cancer wing after the Perlmutters. Laura Perlmutter also worked at the hospital as a volunteer. The Post reports that Ike Perlmutter met with the leaders of multiple university hospitals last week, and is expected to become "a key adviser on veterans' health care."
The close connections between the Perlmutters and Trump have raised eyebrows from some Marvel readers, who see dissonance in support of Trump with the vocally progressive views of most of Marvel's creators and the political slant of the comics it publishes. Though the Perlmutters are acting as private individuals in their support of Trump, Marvel's success results in profit and influence for Perlmutter, which can be seen as indirectly translating to support for Trump. However, even after Perlmutter's donation of $1 million to a Trump campaign event made national headlines, no Marvel creators have chosen to stop working for the company in protest. Might that change after this latest news?
Perlmutter isn't the only high-ranking comics industry executive to support Donald Trump. Diamond CEO Steve Geppi was vocal in his support of Trump during the election as well. Perlmutter also won't be the only big campaign donor from the entertainment business to secure a position in the Trump administration. Former WWE CEO Linda McMahon was named the head of Trump's Small Business Administration in December.
Despite the close associations with the Perlmutters, Trump's campaign staff have snubbed Marvel with their cosplay, as Trump campaign manager Kellyanne Conway posted a photo of herself dressed as Supergirl in December, seemingly endorsing Marvel's Distinguished Competition.