Target Faces Lawsuit over Profit Losses from Pride Campaign Backlash

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A former advisor to President Donald Trump is suing Target due to shareholder losses from boycotts over its Pride Month displays.

America First Legal, led by former Trump White House adviser Stephen Miller, filed a lawsuit claiming that Target lied to investors when it stated it was assessing risks regarding its diversity, equity and inclusion policies. According to The Washington Post, the retailer’s stock price has dropped nearly 20 percent since Mid-May. At the time, following backlash for its Pride displays, Target faced protests, bomb scares, in-store threats from customers and a defeat in the stock market.

The complaint, filed on behalf of the investor and Florida resident Brain Craig, states that he spent around $50,000 for 216.450 shares of Target stock in April 2022. This year, however, the value of his holdings dropped to $34,839 and dropped even further to $28,896 by June 14 — after the controversy with Target took place.

The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, claimed that Target’s abrupt loss in market capitalization is a “direct and predictable result of management’s calculated decisions to promote sexualized material to children,” alluding to family-themed LGBTQ Pride items.

“These false and misleading statements [about Pride Month promotions] caused Target’s shareholders to unknowingly support Target’s Board and management in their misuse of investor funds to serve its divisive political and social goals―and ultimately lose billions,” the lawsuit continued.

However, Neil Saunders, managing director for retail at GlobalData, contended that Target’s stock place was on the decline before the recent Pride controversy.

“It is extremely hard to quantify exactly what role the Pride Month backlash had on the stock price,” Saunders said. “However, given that there is no data to suggest it had a tangible impact on Target’s sales, it seems highly unlikely that it was the primary cause, or even a major cause, of the decline.”

Several weeks before America First Legal’s lawsuit was filed, Republican attorneys general warned Target of possible legal liability because the Pride campaign and its endorsement of LGBTQ rights groups contradict “our States’ economic interests as Target shareholders.”

Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Joe Raedle/Staff 

Milton Quintanilla is a freelance writer and content creator. He is a contributing writer for Christian Headlines and the host of the For Your Soul Podcast, a podcast devoted to sound doctrine and biblical truth. He holds a Masters of Divinity from Alliance Theological Seminary.

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