After a surge of criticism, Walmart has pulled “Impeach 45” baby and adult clothing from its online marketplace. It appears that the clothing was being sold by a third party through Walmart’s open online marketplace rather than directly by the company itself. Still, the sale of the clothing caused an immediate backlash for Walmart.
The controversy was sparked when right-wing commentator Ryan Fournier called Walmart out with a tweet. Walmart was quick to respond via Twitter, noting: “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.”
It appears that Old Glory and Tee Spring were behind the shirts. Old Glory is known for selling thousands of different types of political shirts, ranging from conservative to liberal. Quite frankly, the company’s only agenda seems to be to make money.
The anti-Trump shirts are a particularly thorny issue for Walmart as Trump’s camp constitutes a major customer base for the company. Trump’s political clout appears to be the strongest in traditionally red states and America’s less-urban/suburban heartlands, where Walmart is particularly active. Some Trump supporters have been pushing to boycott Walmart. However, Trump 2020 campaign manager Brad Parscale has said that that’s not necessary.
Walmart has a long history of getting mixed up with political messaging. Previously, the company came under fire from the national Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) for selling Black Lives Matter shirts with “Bulletproof” printed on them. The FOP argued that the shirts were racially divisive.
Another shirt sold through Walmart said “Rope. Tree. Journalist. SOME ASSEMBLY REQUIRED.” (To be honest, this particular shirt is the most offensive, in my opinion, because it advocates for violence and goes against America’s Constitutionally enshrined freedom of the press. It’s protected free speech but I’d lose respect for any retailer selling such clothing.)
While the ‘Impeach 45’ shirts are no longer available through Walmart, they can be found on Amazon and through other websites.