Target changes political donation policy

The all-seeing eye of Target has registered your concerns and is forming a committee.
The all-seeing eye of Target has registered your concerns and is forming a committee.

In the aftermath of the public relations train-wreck that was Target's donation to MNForward, the corporation has revised its policy on how it sets about influencing our elections.

Target CEO Gregg Stienhafel will now have to share decision making powers with a "Policy Committee," composed of other senior executives.

Here's how the Policy Committee makes it's decisions, according to Target's website:

Before any contribution is made, the Policy Committee: (i) determines that it supports our business interests; (ii) gives consideration to the interests of our guests, team members, shareholders and other stakeholders; and (iii) concludes that under the circumstances, it is an appropriate means of advancing our public policy position.

Target spokesman Jessica Carlson said the new Policy Committee and its decision-making guidelines are the product of a review process the company started during and after the 2010 election cycle.

But if the new policy is a response to the shit-storm kicked up last summer, it's hard to see how the new policy will change anything. Sure, instead of one Target suit deciding how to throw the corporation's money into the political arena, there will be five. And going forward they will "give consideration" to factors beyond their bottom line, whatever that means.

There's certainly no specific statement that Target won't fund the campaigns of discriminatory bigots even if they do have pro-business policies. It looks like we'll just have to hope that Target execs remember how ugly things got in August.

If you're interested in tracking Target's election giving, the retailer is maintaining a list, updated twice a year, of all its political contributions over $5,000. Previous Coverage:

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