The Walmart.com marketplace is teeming with MAGA hats and coffee mugs, but the company has just pulled an anti-Trump shirt with the slogan “Impeach 45” from its website.
Late last night, Ryan Fournier, the chairman of the political group Students For Trump, tweeted about the shirt (that also came in adorable onesie form), asking Walmart, “What kind of message are you trying to send?”
The shirt wasn’t made by Walmart. It was sold on its marketplace, which features products by many brands, and includes political t-shirts representing many different points of view. This particular shirt was made by a brand called Old Glory. But overnight, Trump supporters have been expressing anger toward Walmart on social media, with the hashtag #BoycottWalmart gathering more than 27,700 tweets at the time of publication. It appears that Walmart has now taken down the listing for the shirt, caving in to the pressure. Another shirt that said “45 You’re Fired” has also been removed from the site.
It’s unclear whether these are one-off incidents, or whether Walmart is systematically removing anti-Trump paraphernalia from the site. We have reached out to Walmart for comment, and will update this story with more details when the company responds. Meanwhile, pro-Trump products are still widely available on the site.
This appears to be a partisan move for a company that has been working hard to cater to the heartland, where many Trump supporters live, and urban centers, which tend to be more Democratic. Over the last few years, the company has acquired brands like Bonobos, Modcloth, and Jet.com, which serve young millennial consumers, who tend to be more liberal, according to polls.
(Update: In a tweet, Walmart responded directly to Fournier, saying, “These items were sold by third-party sellers on our open marketplace and were not offered directly by Walmart. We’re removing these types of items pending review of our marketplace policies.” The company did not explain whether “these types of items” refers to all political products, or only anti-Trump items.)
These items were sold by third-party sellers on our open marketplace and were not offered directly by Walmart. We’re removing these types of items pending review of our marketplace policies.
— Walmart Newsroom (@WalmartNewsroom) July 3, 2018