The Lincoln Project, a super-PAC founded by prominent Republicans including George Conway (husband of White House advisor Kellyanne Conway), released the video, titled “Mourning in America,” attacking Trump’s response to the coronavirus pandemic. A video released by a recently formed anti-Trump group on Monday sparked an overnight Twitter rampage from President Donald Trump. I cover all things related to careers, jobs and the workplace. Walmart billionaire Christy Walton. She declined to comment on the donations. Change ), You are commenting using your Facebook account. Should we expect a more lasting change in the political alignments of one of America’s most influential philanthropic families? "This shows you the real Walmart," Bertha Lewis, an advocate associated with Making Change at Walmart, said. She inherited a stake in Walmart when her husband, John Walton (one of founder Sam Walton’s sons), died in a 2005 plane crash. Lukas, James, and Carrie gave almost exclusively to Democrats starting in 2011. Enter your email address to follow HistPhil and receive notifications of new posts by email. We made it easy for you to exercise your right to vote! ©2020 Verizon Media. And the health insurance giant Aetna donated more than $7 million to conservative political groups in 2011, according to a regulatory filing accidentally released by the company. Best Buy also stoked the ire of liberal customers for donating to the same group. The report also said that members of the Walton family, the billionaire heirs to the Walmart fortune who own over half of Walmart common stock and hold three seats on the company's board, spent more than $1.3 million on federal elections last year, along with hundreds of thousands more at the state and local level. Walmart's PAC and the heirs to the company's fortune are spending millions to influence the political process -- and their money is often going to boost conservative candidates and causes, according to claims by a union-backed coalition pushing for more rights for Walmart workers. She noted that 49 percent of the PAC's contributions went to Democrats in the 2011-2012 election cycle. We also included Jim Carr Walton, one of the largest donors in the family, a direct Walmart heir, and former member of the foundation’s board. According to research by Adam Bonica, Nolan McCarty, Keith T. Poole, and Howard Rosenthal, the share of federal campaign contributions from the 0.01 percent of wealthiest households grew to over 40 percent in 2012. Change ), You are commenting using your Google account. (Note that while the 2018 contribution data is almost complete, a handful – 8 states, to be clear – are not complete at the time of this writing, according to Follow the Money). ... Arkansas Walton family house, as photographed in 1961. The Waltons’ private foundation, the Walton Family Foundation, is a major donor to school choice initiatives and charter schools, as well as environmental conservation. In addition to Conway, the group’s advisors include Jennifer Horn, a former chair of the Republican Party of New Hampshire, and Mike Madrid, former political director of the California Republican Party, among others. © 2020 Forbes Media LLC. The figure shows that, for both generations, the share of contribution dollars going to Democratic-affiliated recipients has increased over time, and that this shift started before the 2016 election. In the 1980s, Republicans had the advantage in fundraising from the 0.01 percent, but the share of contributions from this slice of the income distribution to Democrats has been growing steadily. Change ). Their other major non-partisan contribution went to the With Honor Fund, a political action committee focused on electing veterans to office that “will work in a cross-partisan way to create a more effective and less polarized government.” While it is too early to tell where their support will go in the 2020 elections, the only presidential candidates that have received gifts from any Waltons so far have been Cory Booker and John Hickenlooper, both Democrats. to help run the video as an advertisement on national television. She inherited a stake in Walmart when her husband, John Walton (one of founder Sam Walton’s sons), died in a 2005 plane crash. It's not uncommon for major companies to face scrutiny over political donations. Check out these charts on the groups' political contributions from Making Change at Walmart: Part of HuffPost Business. The report also includes figures on contributions related to the issue that is perhaps closest to the company’s heart: workers’ wages. In response to the ad, Trump called The Lincoln Project leaders “loser types” and, , “A group of RINO Republicans who failed badly 12 years ago, then again 8 years ago, and then got BADLY beaten by me, a political first timer, 4 years ago, have copied (no imagination) the concept of an ad from Ronald Reagan, ‘Morning in America’, doing everything possible to get even for all of their many failures.”. The Lincoln Project, a super-PAC founded by prominent Republicans including George Conway (husband of White House advisor Kellyanne Conway), released the video, titled “, ,” attacking Trump’s response to the coronavirus pandemic. Because there are many Waltons, we focused on the five members of the family who currently serve on the Walton Family Foundation’s board of directors – Carrie Walton Penner, Alice Walton, James Walton, Lukas Walton, and Rob Walton. ; Sam Walton founded Walmart in 1962. The Waltons’ support of Republicans has seemed unwavering: Alice contributed to every campaign of Republican Greg Abbott – the previous Attorney General and now Governor of Texas – since 2002, spending $350,000 for his gubernatorial campaign in 2014 alone (making her the 10th largest individual donor to that campaign). In the past year, Christy Walton. Where committees clearly supported candidates of one party or another, we coded them as partisan recipients, and otherwise coded them as non-partisan. The Walton family and political spending At the same me, the Walton family, whose members own over half of Walmart common stock and occupy three seats on the company’s board, use their vast fortune to inﬂuence the poli cal process at all levels. Chief operating officer of Facebook. When the younger generation’s donations are included, the Waltons were giving almost as much to Democrats as to Republicans from 2016 to 2018. You may opt-out by. Politics Congress Donald Trump 2020 Elections Tracker Extremism. As Frederick M. Hess and Jay Greene demonstrate, the staff of education reform organizations funded by the Gates Foundation or the Walton Family Foundation overwhelmingly contribute to Democratic candidates for office. $9.1 billion. Still, before 2013, the older generation always gave 90% or more of its contribution dollars to Republican-affiliated candidates and committees. Brooke Buchanan, a Walmart spokesperson, emphasized that the Walton family and Walmart's PAC are different. Some of the group's findings combine contributions from Walmart's PAC and the Walton family, though the two are separate entities and the Walton family's donations aren't affiliated with the company. Altogether, it seems that the Waltons are shifting their political allegiances, or, at a minimum, there is a (shrinking) generational divide that is gradually changing the family’s political involvement as a whole.