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MyPillow CEO transforms factories to produce face masks: "We got ready in three days"

MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell joins Yahoo Finance’s Zack Guzman to discuss his appearance at the White House press conference Monday and how his pillow company is helping combat the coronavirus outbreak.

Video Transcript

ZACK GUZMAN: All right, well, we should have the CEO of MyPillow, Mike Lindell, standing by on the Hangout to talk to us after, of course, yesterday he joined the press conference at the White House in the lawn, standing side by side with the president yesterday discussing plans to help pump out masks at his factory. And, Mike, can we just check here. Are you able to hear me all right?

MIKE LINDELL: Yeah, I can hear you perfect. Can you hear me?

ZACK GUZMAN: Awesome. Yes, I can. Thank you so much for joining us. First up, I just want to talk to you about the reception, the response to you being there yesterday. It was strange to see so many people talking about why Mike Lindell, the CEO of MyPillow, was there. Of course, you addressed why you were there. You've been helping produce up to 10,000 masks. You say you want to get to 50,000 by Friday here. What was your reaction to seeing everyone step out and say, why is this guy at the press conference? because you were helping out.

MIKE LINDELL: Well, you know what? They didn't say it about any other CEOs, and everybody was there. We were there originally for a roundtable, and the president decided to let us say something at the press conference. I was attacked because I spoke out for God. That's what it is. That's why it is.

I turned to the president and I said, you know, Mr. President, can I say something off the cuff? And that's why I spoke out. We should-- that God gave us grace when he was elected because our country had turned away from God, and I said we should spend our time now reading our bibles at home and spending time with our family. And with this great president and all of us getting together and pitching in and making whatever we can do to help, even if it's just praying, to get it-- come out of this with the best-- the best security and safety ever.

ZACK GUZMAN: Yeah, and Mike, I mean, when we talk about this, it's crazy to think that people would want to critique a company out there that's working with, you know, a manufacturing sector here in the US. You obviously made a lot of efforts to keep some jobs here at MyPillow in the US when you think about manufacturing here and then also stepping up to work on getting equipment to those on the front lines. So why was it so important for you? What really was the impetus here in putting out [INAUDIBLE]?

MIKE LINDELL: Well, it was so important. It was a couple weeks ago. I'm going, we have to step up there. I heard there wasn't going to be enough masks for our hospitals and stuff. And I have loved ones, and my passion has always been to help people.

And I reached out. The vice president had this call list from Peter Navarro where you could reach out, and I had to learn what kind of masks I needed to make, what the materials were. We got ready in three days and changed one of our whole factories to making masks and making it safe for our workers. And then I reached out.

What happened was all these other companies were calling me and wanted to get involved too. So I reached back out to Peter Navarro. I said, I have other companies who want to get involved, private sector, to help us get us back. We're trying to get everybody back safely to their jobs, but the first thing we need to do is make our brave people in the hospitals, the doctors and stuff, make them safe.

And I just couldn't believe it when I heard the comments that came in today like Jim Acosta. He made a horrible comment about me, saying that I-- what' the MyPillow guy doing there, you know, trying to sell stuff. If I was selling anything, it was Jesus Christ on people, you know? You know, give back to God. Give back to our bibles. But I certainly wasn't there to sell MyPillows. I think everybody knows who MyPillow is.

I was there to tell people we should help our country and, you know, to help-- help all private sector. We should all pitch in to make this-- you know, you had so many great CEOs there of other companies doing things for-- we need-- when this ends, we need to have all the manufacturing here in the United States instead of relying on China for 90-some percent of all our medical things. I think it's shown our country that now, and I want to be part of that.

ZACK GUZMAN: Yeah. We can talk about that too. I mean, there are other ways too. As you're saying, there's other ways to advertise and get your message out there that might be a little bit more effective as you've invested a lot in when you think about paid programming here.

But, Mike, last question. Obviously a lot of people are talking about you being up there with the president. You've obviously donated money to his campaign before. Whether or not you would be pushed to run for governor in Minnesota. Are there political aspirations there to kind of take a larger role in public here?

MIKE LINDELL: Well, let me tell you, when I went all in for Donald Trump, I had never met him. We had a private meeting in the summer of 2016 by his request. He said, Mike, you know, you do manufacturing here and stuff. And I left his office, and we had talked about all the great things he said he was going to help the country. I said, you know what? I'm going all in. I felt God led me to go in. If God wants me to run-- if I feel in prayer God wants me to run for governor of Minnesota, I will not hesitate. I'll do what I called to do.

ZACK GUZMAN: All right, well, Mike, I just want to say thanks again. We've got to end it here, but thank you so much for working on, you know, adding resources to protecting nurses on the front lines. So many people want to thank you for that. But Mike Lindell, the CEO of MyPillow, thanks again, and stay safe out there.

MIKE LINDELL: Thanks for having me on. God bless you.

ZACK GUZMAN: Appreciate it, Mike.