Hallmark Cards has demanded refunds of donations it gave to Sen. Josh Hawley and Sen. Roger Marshall. Both Senators had objected to certifying the Electoral College results after Congress reconvened following the Capitol riots. The company said that while it has donated to Republicans, Democrats, and Independents alike, it could not be associated with the two Senators’ actions in particular.
Hallmark Demanded the Refunds Because the Senators ‘Do Not Reflect Our Company’s Values’
— Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) January 11, 2021
Hallmark issued the statement to Judd Legum, who writes the newsletter Popular Information. The company’s political action committee, HALLPAC, demanded the refunds. HALLPAC had recently donated $3,000 to Hawley and $5,000 to Marshall, both of whom objected to certifying the electoral college results.
The company’s statement reads that while they donate to Democrats, Republicans, and Independents, Hallmark does not condone violence and cannot support those two Senators in particular.
HALLPAC, Hallmark’s political action committee, supports elected leaders from a wide variety of viewpoints—including Democrats, Republicans and Independents. Hallmark believes the peaceful transition of power is part of the bedrock of our democratic system, and we abhor violence of any kind. The recent actions of Senators Josh Hawley and Roger Marshall do not reflect our company’s values. As a result, HALLPAC requested Sens. Hawley and Marshall to return all HALLPAC campaign contributions.
Before the Capitol riots, 14 Senators were going to object to electoral certifications in one state or more, Popular Info reported. But after the riots, only eight of the 14 continued with their objections.
Hallmark Cards, located in Kansas City, pools employees’ and retirees’ financial contributions in its HALLPAC, The Kansas City Star explained.
Other Companies Have Said They Are Suspending Donations, But Only Hallmark Demanded a Refund
Hallmark is not alone, but it appears to be the only company demanding a refund as of the time of publication. Blue Cross Blue Shield Association’s PAC told Legum that it was suspending support for 147 Republicans who voted against certification. Marriott International also told Legum that it would stop donating to those who voted against certifying the results, and Commerce Bancshares gave a similar indication. Others who said they were suspending donations to those who voted against certification included Dow Inc., Boston Scientific (which is suspending all PAC activity), Citibank, 3M (which is pausing all donations to reassess), Mastercard, Charles Schwab (which is halting all donations), Hilton (which is suspending its PAC), and more.
When Hawley voted against certification, he said, in part: “this is the appropriate place for these concerns to be raised, which is why I have raised them here today and I hope that this body will not miss the opportunity to take affirmative action to address the concerns of so many millions of Americans.”
Marshall said: “The violence and mob rule, which occurred at the U.S. Capitol today and across the country this past year are unacceptable and I condemn them at the highest level. Like all of us in the chamber, I am thankful for the heroic law enforcement officers who worked feverishly to restore order so we that we can get back to electoral certification process.”