Walmart accidentally sparks battle with Sen. Josh Hawley, after a social media staffer calls him a '#soreloser' on the company's Twitter account
- On Tuesday, Walmart's corporate account called Republican Sen. Josh Hawley a "#soreloser" on Twitter after Hawley said he would challenge the certification of the Electoral College vote.
- Walmart said in a statement to Business Insider that the tweet "was mistakenly posted by a member of our social media team who intended to publish this comment to their personal account."
- Hawley responded by asking Walmart to "apologize for using slave labor" and "the pathetic wages you pay your workers as you drive mom and pop stores out of business."
A social media misstep sparked an unlikely battle between Republican Sen. Josh Hawley and Walmart on Wednesday.
On Tuesday, Hawley tweeted that he planned to object to the certification of the Electoral College vote on January 6, citing baseless claims of voter fraud. Experts say that the challenge is extremely unlikely to succeed, with President-elect Joe Biden's victory over President Donald Trump confirmed by the Electoral College on December 14.Read more: The race is already starting for the Republican 2024 presidential nomination. Here's Insider's rankings of the top 14 likely candidates, from Trump to Haley to Hogan.
—Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) December 30, 2020In a since-deleted tweet, Walmart's social media account responded to Hawley. The tweet reads: "Go ahead. Get your 2 hour debate. #soreloser."
Walmart said in a statement to Business Insider that the tweet "was mistakenly posted by a member of our social media team who intended to publish this comment to their personal account.""We have removed the post and have no intention of commenting on the subject of certifying the electoral college," the statement continued. "We apologize to Senator Hawley for this error and any confusion about our position."
Hawley responded by asking Walmart to "apologize for using slave labor" and "the pathetic wages you pay your workers as you drive mom and pop stores out of business."
—Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) December 30, 2020When asked for comment on the incident, a representative for Hawley referred Business Insider to the senator's tweets.Walmart and other major retailers have been criticized for using suppliers that fail to pay workers a living wage and perpetuate violence and harassment. (Walmart has released a number of reports on its efforts to prevent slavery and human trafficking through its supply chains.)
While many small businesses have suffered during the pandemic, Walmart's business has been booming. According to the nonprofit Opportunity Insights, the number of small businesses in the US has dropped by 29% since January. Walmart's shares increased by 22% so far in 2020.
Walmart CEO Doug McMillon congratulated Biden on winning the presidential election during a call with investors November."I want to wrap up by saying congratulations to President-elect Biden," McMillon said on a call with investors. "We look forward to working with the administration and both houses of Congress to move the country forward and solve issues on behalf of our associates, customers, and other stakeholders."
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