FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 25, 2018
 Contact: press@espyforsenate.com

Cindy Hyde-Smith’s Toxic Comments Threaten Mississippi Jobs

As Major League Baseball Joins Big Business In Asking Hyde-Smith For Donation Refund, Mississippi’s Future Is At Stake

JACKSON, Miss.–Today Major League Baseball joined several major U.S. businesses in denouncing recent comments made by Cindy Hyde-Smith and asking her campaign to refund their donations.

“The entire state of Mississippi can see how Cindy Hyde-Smith is costing our state jobs and putting our children’s future in jeopardy,” said Danny Blanton, communications director for the Espy for Senate campaign. “Her toxic comments are scaring away the kind of investments our state needs to move forward. This is the number one issue at the ballot box on Tuesday. Mike Espy is the clear choice when it comes to showing the nation who Mississippi really is.”

“When you’ve lost America’s favorite pastime, you’ve crossed a red line,” Blanton added. 

Here’s a recap of businesses fleeing Hyde-Smith:

UNION PACIFIC, BOSTON SCIENTIFIC, WALMART, AETNA, AT&T, PFIZER, AMGEN, LEIDOS, AND MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL HAVE ALL DENOUNCED HYDE-SMITH’S DIVISIVE COMMENTS AND SAID THEY WOULD REQUEST A REFUND OF THEIR CONTRIBUTIONS

Union Pacific Said They Didn’t Condone Hyde-Smith’s Divisive Remarks And Would Request A Refund Of Their Contribution. [@UnionPacific, Twitter, 11/19/18]

Boston Scientific Said They Had Not Been Aware Of Hyde-Smith’s Remarks And Have Requested A Refund Because Her Statements “Are Not Aligned With Our Company’s Core Values.” [@bostonsci, Twitter, 11/19/18]

Walmart Said They Were Withdrawing Their Support From Hyde-Smith And Requesting A Refund Of All Campaign Donations Because Her Comments “Do Not Reflect The Values Of Our Company And Associates.” [@Walmart, Twitter, 11/20/18]

Aetna Requested A Refund Of Their Contribution To Hyde-Smith, Saying They Found Her Remarks “Highly Offensive And Simply Unacceptable.” [@AetnaNews, Twitter, 11/21/18]

AT&T Said The Company Was “No Longer Supporting Senator Hyde-Smith And Have Requested A Refund Of Our Contributions.” “A spokesman for AT&T, which reportedly donated $2,000 to the Mississippi Republican’s campaign, told The New York Daily News on Tuesday that it had asked for its campaign donations back. ‘We are no longer supporting Senator Hyde-Smith and have requested a refund of our campaign contributions,’ the spokesman told the paper.” [The Hill, 11/21/18]

Pfizer Said The Company Condemned “Racism And Bigotry In All Its Forms” And Requested “A Full Refund Of Our Contributions” To Hyde-Smith. “The pharmaceutical giant Pfizer is one of several big-name companies calling on Mississippi Republican Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith to return their campaign donations after a video surfaced on social media in which she talks about attending a ‘public hanging’ … ‘We condemn racism and bigotry in all its forms,’ Pfizer spokesperson Sharon Castillo told ABC News Tuesday. ‘We are withdrawing our support and have requested a full refund of our contributions, which were made months in advance of the senator’s comments.’” [ABC News, 11/20/18]

Biotechnology Company Amgen Requested A Refund Of Its Contribution To Hyde-Smith, Saying That The Company Was “Committed To A Culture Of Diversity And Inclusion.” “Later Wednesday, California-based biotechnology company Amgen told CNBC that it is also requesting a refund of its campaign contributions to Hyde-Smith. The company had donated at least $2,000 to Hyde-Smith’s Senate campaign, according to a Nov. 1 Federal Election Commission filing. ‘Amgen is committed to a culture of diversity and inclusion. We believe that an environment of diversity and inclusion fosters innovation, which drives our ability to serve patients,’ an Amgen spokeswoman said in an email to CNBC.” [CNBC, 11/21/18]

Leidos Requested That Its Donation To Hyde-Smith Be Refunded. “Pfizer has joined Walmart in announcing they will withdraw campaign donations to Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith, who is currently running in Mississippi’s special Senate race, over her remarks about attending a public hanging, ABC News reports. Companies including AT&T, Leidos and Boston Scientific, have requested their donations be refunded.” [Axios, 11/21/18]

Major League Baseball Requested That The Hyde-Smith Campaign Return Its $5,000 Donation In The Wake Of Hyde-Smith’s Controversial Comments. “Major League Baseball is asking Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MS) to return its $5,000 donation to her campaign, amid a public outcry over her racially insensitive remarks that were caught on camera earlier this month. ‘The contribution was made in connection with an event that MLB lobbyists were asked to attend,’ the league said in a statement issued Sunday. ‘MLB has requested that the contribution be returned.’” [Daily Beast, 11/25/18]

GOOGLE HAS ALSO DISTANCED ITSELF FROM THE COMPANY’S DONATION TO HYDE-SMITH, SAYING IT NEVER WOULD HAVE DONATED IF THEY HAD HEARD HER “PUBLIC HANGING” COMMENTS

After Its Donation To Hyde-Smith Was Reported, Google Said The Donation Had Been Made Before Hyde-Smith’s Remarks Were Made Public And That The Company “Would Not Have Made Such A Contribution Had We Known About Them.” “Google is backing away from its recent donation to Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith’s campaign as backlash swells around the Republican’s remarks about attending a ‘public hanging’ … ‘This contribution was made on Nov. 2 before Sen. Hyde-Smith’s remarks became public on Nov. 11. While we support candidates who promote pro-growth policies for business and technology, we do not condone these remarks and would have not made such a contribution had we known about them,’ the statement reads.” [Clarion Ledger, 11/15/18]

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