Target Issues Apology After Donation to Anti-Gay, Conservative Republican

Target has learned firsthand the risks in donating to political campaigns, an option that only recently became available to companies thanks to the Supreme Court. The Minnesota company issued a public apology Thursday for making a political donation to a business group supporting conservative Republican Tom Emmer’s campaign for Minnesota governor. Emmer is strongly opposed to same-sex marriage and other gay-rights initiatives, which was the impetus for the widespread outrage that manifested itself in Facebook campaigns, online petitions, and talks of a customer boycott. The $150,000 contribution was said to have outraged a number of Target employees, as well.

Target CEO Gregg Steinhafel wrote his employees to explain the company was “genuinely sorry” and that a review process would be set up to oversee future political donations. He insisted that the donation was made due to Emmel’s position on economic, not social, issues.

While I firmly believe that a business climate conducive to growth is critical to our future, I realize our decision affected many of you in a way I did not anticipate, and for that I am genuinely sorry,” Steinhafel wrote.

As others have observed, there is notably no mention in the apology of Target denouncing support for Emmel or removing any portion of the donation, a move several of the protesters have called for.

Target apologizes for Minn. political donation [AP]

Target Issues Apology After Donation to Anti-Gay, Conservative Republican