Macy’s Inc. (M), the second-largest U.S. department-store chain, is under pressure to ditch Donald Trump- branded apparel after the billionaire mounted political attacks on President Barack Obama in the election campaign.
Almost 500,000 people have added their names to an online petition urging Macy’s to end its partnership with Trump, SignOn.org, the hosting site, said yesterday in an e-mailed statement. The petition was started by Angelo Carusone, who claims credit for TV anchor Glenn Beck’s removal by Fox News through his StopBeck effort, said the site, which lets anyone start and run their own online campaigns and is linked to MoveOn.org, a group that supports Obama.
The petition picked up steam over the weekend after Trump, a real-estate developer, repeatedly called for a revolution following Obama’s re-election last week, SignOn.org said. By doing business with Trump, Macy’s isn’t living up to its own standards of social responsibility, Carusone said in the statement.
“If I stood inside a Macy’s store and said the things that Trump has said, security would escort me out,” he said, describing Trump’s statements as sexist, bigoted and mean.
While many vendors express political opinions, Macy’s merchandise and marketing do not represent any political position, Jim Sluzewski, a spokesman for Macy’s in Cincinnati, said in an e-mail.
“I question the legitimacy and accuracy of the website and the number of signatures claimed to have joined this petition,” Michael Cohen, a spokesman for Trump, said in an e-mail. The Trump organization “values its long-standing relationship with Macy’s and looks forward to many more years of continued success,” he said.
The petition statement read: “Macy’s: Donald Trump does not reflect the ‘magic of Macy’s.’ We urge you to sever ties with him. Macy’s says it has a strong obligation to be ‘socially responsible’ and that ‘actions speak louder than words.’ Indeed. It’s time to act.”
Last week, Trump, 66, on Twitter called the Obama re- election a travesty, a total sham and a disgusting injustice. He also urged Americans to march on Washington. Earlier, he warned people to make sure their votes weren’t stolen, and he described global warming as “a concept created by and for the Chinese to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.”
Macy’s Chief Executive Officer Terry Lundgren has revived the 800-plus store chain partly by adding more exclusive merchandise from Trump, Madonna, Sean John, Tommy Hilfiger and other brands. Most recently the strategy helped boost third- quarter revenue 3.8 percent to $6.08 billion.
On Macy’s website yesterday, $650 Trump suits were on sale for $249.99 and $69.50 dress shirts for $46.99.
The shares rose 1 percent to $39.08 yesterday at the close in New York. Macy’s has climbed 21 percent this year.
To contact the reporter on this story: Cotten Timberlake in Washington at email@example.com
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Robin Ajello at firstname.lastname@example.org