Target to Take No Corrective Action Over Donation to Anti-Gay PAC

Target Corporation says it will not honor the Human Rights Campaign's request to "make it right" over its sizable donation to MN Forward, a conservative political PAC which has funded campaign ads for anti-gay gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer. Emmer supports an amendment banning same-sex marriage in Minnesota, among other anti-equality measures including preventing gay and lesbian couples from using a surrogate mother. 

HRC is responding by putting $150K toward pro-LGBT Minnesota candidates, the group says in a press release:

Target_emmer "After two weeks of good-faith discussions, and two tentative agreements, with Target Corporation, the company has informed the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) civil rights organization, that it will be take no corrective actions to repair the harm that it caused by contributing $150,000 to an organization supporting a vehemently anti-gay candidate closely associated with a Christian rock band that advocates death and violence to gay people. In response, HRC announced that it will devote $150,000 of its own resources to help elect a pro-equality governor and legislature in Minnesota. The next governor will likely have the opportunity to either sign or veto marriage equality legislation in the North Star State. 

Said HRC President Joe Solmonese: “All fair-minded Americans will now rightly question Target’s commitment to equality. If they’re initial contribution was a slap in the face, their refusal to make it right is a punch in the gut and that’s not something that we will soon forget. However, with full marriage equality hanging in the balance in Minnesota, regardless of Target, it’s important that we as a community send a message that we will work tirelessly to elect pro-equality candidates.”

HRC tells Towleroad it will be supporting Mark Dayton for governor as well as fund "pro-equality legislative candidates and pro-LGBT causes." 


  1. Steve says

    I’m not shopping there.

    But I live in San Francisco where Targets aren’t allowed. Hah.

  2. DLRnATL says

    Ugh! I really liked shopping in Target over, say, Walmart. The Kmarts that are left are so depressing. I was really hoping that this mess was going to sort itself out. Where am I going to spend my disposable gay dollars now?

  3. says

    “In response, HRC announced that it will devote $150,000 of its own resources to help elect a pro-equality governor and legislature in Minnesota.”??????

    The Hilary Rosen Champagne fund should have already planned to donate money to such candidates. It’s THEIR REASON TO EXIST. What a shady lot they are with such disingenuous, self-fellating bull, not to mention their dishonest Equality Index and Buyers Guide, and providing cover again and again for Obama’s various betrayals.

    Boycott Target. Boycott HRC!

  4. kansastock says

    Unfortunately, Target’s close to home and work and has pretty good cheap shit. Lets hope Costco sees this and doesn’t fuck up.

  5. Jaybird89101 says

    Boycott, Target indeed! And, while they’re taking well-deserved potshots at this finally revealed homophobic retailer, let’s see HRC wipe out Target’s 100% GLBT equalty ranking and reduce it to zero – NOW!!

  6. The Other Anastasia Beaverhausen says

    Be strong DLRNATL. You might need a twelve-step program to stop buying crap from China.

    Meanwhile, there’s always with no sales tax (depending on your state, perhaps) and free shipping on lots of stuff. And the UPS guy comes to your house…in those brown shorts!

  7. Jon B says

    Well, I’m done with Target… I may have only spent about $1,000 a year there, but it’s going to someone else now. Definitely not Best Buy though. Maybe Citizens United will have the unintended side effect of creating so many boycotts that there will once again be a place in the world for mom and pop shops.

  8. Aquaman says

    Target had better start stocking up on over-alls and cheese doodles for their new demographic… I’ll never step foot in a Target again and I really liked shopping there.

  9. says

    Maybe if The Firm hadn’t rolled up all Gangsta demanding that Target give THEM $$$ something could have come out of this. This is exactly what made America start seeing through Jesse Jackson. Find something and then extort money for your own organization. If people would spend their tithes on sending LGBT people to things like Wellstone candidate training , etc., maybe we would have loads of LGBT politicians out there and no corporation would dare cross us (look at Black folks).

    Not only will I shop at Target, I’ll do it with relish because they told The Firm to Suck It. That should be done more often when a gunman shows up demanding money. I hope Target will now sit down with some LOCAL LGBT groups and see what they can work out together.

  10. WTF says

    Oh, Derek. What a rebel! We’re all so impressed with the novelty of your thinking and your awe-inspiring resolve. Btw, your face must be really pissed to have your nose cut off.

  11. TonyJazz says

    Derek, your hostilities towards HRC is appalling, but it’s your business.

    Target does need to make compensation to balance out their mistaken attempt to influence government in MN.

    I’m not too concerned over the gay-issue side of this story. The ultimate goal is to make oorporate america accountable for their efforts to buy political influence.

    I don’t want to be paying taxes (corporate donation related cost increases) on products that I buy so that politicians can be bought by these companies. Corporate influence on elections needs to end!

  12. TANK says

    So the money and resources the HRC spent on this were wasted. Continue the boycott! I will…I mean, I don’t shop at target very often, but I usually did rather than shop at walmart for things like curtain rods, etc. I won’t be shopping at target anymore. this proves that what’s right and the interest of business are not parallel.

  13. ellis says

    Don’t stop shopping at Target, just stop buying there. Go into the store and fill a cart with whatever you would normally buy there. Then abandon the cart in the aisles somewhere, with a note attached that says “No more Gay Dollars for you!” After they have had the opportunity to restock the contents of many, many abandoned carts, they may change their minds.

  14. CKNJ says

    Target WAS a great store to shop at, but as AQUAMAN says, they can start stocking up on the cheap shit that braindead zombies that hate us want to buy, because that is the demographic they have bought for themselves for $150,000…

    And to the HRC: LISTEN UP people… take their rating right down to 0% because their refusal to ‘make it right’ shows they are NOT our friends, but simply enjoyed the money we spent there. Past tense. Spent.

    The next and last time I step foot in a Target will be to tell the manager of the store exactly why I will never do so again.

  15. voet says

    FYI, Mark Dayton is the great-grandson of George Dayton who founded the Dayton department stores. Dayton’s started Target in the ’60s and later changed their name to Target. It would be sweet irony if Mark Dayton beat our the candidate supported by Target.

  16. says

    HRC should learn that blackmail doesn’t work. Boycotts really don’t either, but bad publicity, now that’s the “TARGET”!

  17. TANK says

    blackmail? Apparently you don’t believe in the free choice of the consumer, which is opposed to capitalism. HRC failed, and they wasted money that could have been spent more productively in FAILING. But it doesn’t take blackmail to get corp. to do the right thing (and in america, there’s no difference between a corporation and an individual). So what blackmail is the HRC guilty of that isn’t inconsistent with consumer choice?

  18. TANK says

    Anyone, in fact, opposed to boycotts is opposed to consumer choice, and the freedom to pursue that choice. This is inconsistent with capitalism. Anyone who disagrees: present your argument.

  19. David says

    So I called Target today to cancel my card. They asked why, and I told them I did not agree with their contributions to a politician who donates money to anti-gay groups. The customer service rep stated that it was the news media making more out of this than what needed to occur. The rep. then tried to direct me to another group to address my concerns and questions about the entire donation. I politely declined.

  20. says

    Damn, there are a lot of people on this gay site who apparently have a problem with consumers making an informed decision about where they spend their money and what kind of influence they want corporations to have on their daily lives.

  21. Bruce says

    I think you can get just about anything you want from amazon. I personally will no longer shop at Target.

  22. Stop the Insanity says

    I actually like the go to shop at Target but don’t buy anything idea that someone else suggested. Fill a cart with stuff (preferably small so you get more in), go through check out but before paying just say – I changed my mind, your company donates to people who hate me. It kind of screws the employees but I actually think it could be quite effective.

  23. Marcito says

    I just cut my Target card in two & will mail it to Target’s CEO, Gregg Steinhafel, just as soon as I’m finished posting this comment. Along w/ the card, I wrote a note to Mr. Steinhafel expressing my decision to return the card and NEVER to step foot in Target again. I’m through being polite with corporate cannibal culture. You should be, too…

    His contact info:

    Mr. Gregg Steinhafel, CEO
    Target Corporate Headquarters
    1000 Nicollet Mall
    Minneapolis, MN 55440

  24. Jeff says

    I guess a lot of these posters have never participated in a gay charity event. If they had, they would remember all the events where Target was the main sponsor.

  25. matt says

    So stupid. Target has decided to put it’s politics ahead of its professed belief in equality. Sorry, but you can’t have it both ways. Target can make its stand but I’ll never set foot in their stores again.

  26. AJ says

    I don’t know how many of you live in MN but I swear to GOD this boycott better not backfire. If we end up with Tom KILL THE GAYS Emmer after 8 confounding years of Tim VETO THE GAYS Pawlenty I am gonna have to abandon my friends and family and move somewhere sane.

  27. says

    Jeff, I’d rather find other funding for charity events. Just because a company donates to gay pride (and other events) doesn’t change the fact that FAR more money has been given to a group who, at the time, supported only ONE candidate… the guy who wants us either fully marginalized, or fully dead. No.

    Seriously… we need to be more vigilant about watching our “friends”.

  28. JoeBlow says

    I tried to give Target a chance to make this right. But they won’t. Just cashed in Am Ex Membership Rewards points for a year’s membership at Costco. My family will be avoiding Target.

  29. bearheim says

    The best idea I’ve seen so far is to go shopping at Target, load up a cart, push it to the checkout and leave it there with a note saying you can’t support their policies & walk out.

  30. ty says

    Derek- HRC wasn’t demanding money, all they said was make it right, meaning give an equal amount of money to the DNC or another Dem group.
    My problem with HRC is that they are not very accurate in assessing scores i.e. keeping Target Corp at 100%. They also are slow to lobby DADT and ENDA, and should be helping more with local races and initiatives.

  31. crispy says

    @Joeblow: Costco is an excellent alternative to Target. Jim Sinegal, cofounder and CEO of Costco, is a major financial contributor to Democrat and progressive candidates. His total financial contribution is over $550,000 and not one cent has gone to Republicans. I’m honestly surprised Freepers’ heads haven’t exploded over that.

  32. Steve says

    I received a flyer in the mail from Target. I grabbed a sharpie and wrote “return to sender” along with the message “I am boycotting Target due to the company’s support of an anti-gay candidate. This is unacceptable.”

    Let’s keep up the boycott and the letters. Once they’re losing literally millions of dollars, they are more likely to reconsider.

  33. SFshawn says

    With this unfortunate decision Target Corp will have an incredibly difficult time convincing the VERY GAY and VERY politically connected GLBT San Franciscans to allow Target to sell their plastic shit at the 2 proposed new stores to be built in San Francisco. Was $150,000 worth it?
    We’ll see?

  34. Tyler says

    Luckily Target Australia is totally unrelated, except in name. Not that I shop there anyway.

  35. ricky says

    I wrote to both Target and Best buy on July 30th regarding the donation – Target sent back a form letter that was actually more offensive than the no response I got from Best Buy. I will not shop at either again anytime soon — I work too hard for my money to have it used by conservative CEOs to pursue their own personal political agenda – which has nothing to do with business and everything to do with their conservative agenda. Neither of these stores is who they presented themselves to be.

  36. MCnNYC says

    @MICHAEL from one note blog LeoMat…
    Michael –just like FOX NEWS has his own narrative and it;s a bit tiring.
    HRC does NOT exist to support STATE ELECTIONS!!
    That is or WAS the reason for NGLTF or the TASK FORCE if you know your history. It was a turf war that HRC ceeded to.
    So go after the TASK FORCE and ask them how much money they are pouring into the MN election…or are they just interested in circuit parties only.
    Good for HRC in making it right if Target won’t…now how about you open up your own wallet and DO SOMETHING cause I’m tired of your constant bashing.

  37. says

    I liked Target’s diapers for my grandson…but i will not stand for their b.s….now that they can spend all they want to hell with the little people…yes make Target…THE TARGET…i like that idea so anyhow that’s all she wrote folks…No more Target..

  38. Jerry6 says

    I do not shop at Walmart because they put American manufacturers out of business by buying only cheap foreign made goods, and now I can add Target for being bigoted.

    Come to think about it, I never shopped at either one before, but now I have really good reasons not to ever start.