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Gay-rights activists are cutting up their Target credit cards and demonstrating outside the retail giant's stores to protest the company's donation to a political group backing Minnesota Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer, who is against same-sex marriage.
Target contributed $150,000 to MN Forward, a pro-business group that has endorsed and is paying for ads for Emmer, ABC News reported.
The boycott got a major boost Tuesday when MoveOn.org, the Democratic political advocacy group, said it would help with the petition drive to spread the boycott, according to Reuters.
On his Web site, Emmer says he defines marriage as a "union between one man and one woman" -- a view common among politicians in both parties. Emmer also angered some voters by contributing $250 to a Christian rock band called You Can Run But You Cannot Hide that has expressed anti-gay sentiments.
On Facebook, activists going after Target have started a page called "Boycott Target Until They Cease Funding Anti-Gay Politics." Meanwhile, a second group with a similar name is advocating a protest of the electronics retailer Best Buy because it also contributed to MN Forward.
"Target has always been a really supportive workplace for GLBT people," said Monica Meyer, head of OutFront Minnesota. "I think people are feeling a little betrayed by the company . . . seems really contradictory to how they've acted in the past."
But Target CEO Gregg Steinhafel said the retailer's support for the gay, lesbian and trans-gender community is "unwavering."
Target, Steinhafel said, "has a history of supporting organizations and candidates, on both sides of the aisle, who seek to advance policies aligned with our business objectives, such as job creation and growth. It is also important to note that we rarely endorse all advocated positions of organizations or candidates we support, and we do not have a political or social agenda."
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