WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Walmart Watch Issued the Following: With a vote on political contributions disclosure planned for this Friday’s Walmart annual shareholders meeting, Walmart Watch today released new research on Walmart's political giving—revealing a contrast between the company’s stated political priorities and the candidates the company supports.
The report, titled “What’s Right: Walmart’s Words vs. Walmart’s Political Priorities,” examines available public records on Walmart’s political contributions. It shows how the company and Walton family have wielded their resources to undermine the interests of Walmart’s core customers and associates, and at times, even the legislation Walmart supposedly supports. For example, despite Walmart’s public support of health care reform in 2010, 65% of recipients of contributions from Walmart’s PAC or the Walton family in the House of Representatives voted against health care reform.
Since the election of President Barack Obama, a spate of articles have reported a supposed shift in Walmart’s political contributions from leaning heavily Republican in federal elections in the early 2000s to seemingly favoring Democrats in the most recent cycle. However, as Walmart seeks to soften its image to enter new urban markets, where progressives have made Walmart’s entry and business practices a community issue, this research calls into question the moderate image Walmart attempts to portray to these communities.
“As Walmart seeks to enter new communities, it has benefited from stories suggesting its politics and contributions are moderate and balanced. This report shows how Walmart’s political contributions have been anything but balanced. Shareholders and residents of these communities should question why the company opposes further political contributions disclosure, which would give a more complete picture of the company’s political influence and priorities,” said Ryan Vanderbilt, Walmart Watch spokesman.
Other primary research findings include:
- Walmart’s PAC and the Walton family continue to give overwhelmingly to the GOP.
- The primary area of increasing support for Democratic Party candidates is among conservative Democrats in the House of Representatives.
- Members of the Tea Party and Blue Dog Coalition Democrats are overrepresented in Walmart’s PAC political giving while Progressive Caucus Democrats are significantly under-represented.
- Democrats supported by Walmart were much more likely to oppose key elements of President Obama’s legislative agenda.
- At the state level, the company and family further wield their vast resources to undermine the interests of Walmart’s core customers (working families) and associates.
For more information and to download the report visit: http://walmartwatch.org/get-the-facts/whats-right-walmarts-political-priorities/
Walmart Watch seeks to hold Walmart fully accountable for its impact on communities, the American workforce, the retail sector, the environment and the nation’s economy. Walmart Watch exists to challenge Walmart to more fully embrace its corporate responsibilities and live up to its position as the largest corporation in the United States. Walmart Watch is a project of the United Food and Commercial Workers.