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David Hogg and fellow protesters were specifically against Publix’s monetary support of Florida Republican gubernatorial candidate Adam Putnam, a supporter of the National Rifle Association. Publix is one of Putnam’s biggest contributors, donating more than $118,000 to Putnam’s campaigns from 1999-2012, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, a nonpartisan group that tracks funding and lobbying efforts.
Anyone who supports an NRA sellout is an NRA sellout. That is why I am calling on everyone to stop shopping at Publix until they pull their endorsement of Putnam publicly. Publix is supporting the inaction after pulse, strozier, Douglas, liberty city. Don’t support an NRA sellout— David Hogg (@davidhogg111) May 23, 2018
Early this morning @davidhogg111 teamed up with @ChangeTheRef to create an art instillation outside of @publix in protest of the corporation and their support of Adam Putnam. 17 chalk outlines in multiple parking spots were drawn and wrapped in caution tape. #msd #neveragain pic.twitter.com/043cC2o6kA— Emilee McGovern (@EmileeRose) May 25, 2018
From the parking lots of Parkland to the streets of Liberty City we work to create the world we wish to see for both us and future generations. Working together as Americans anything is possible. @firepfeiffer1 thanks for join me this morning pic.twitter.com/fcwZjKZsMf— David Hogg (@davidhogg111) May 26, 2018
Guac’s parents Manuel and Patricia lied down together at “die in “ protest to Publix’s contributions to pro-NRA Adam Putnam’s campaign #ChangeTheRef #MarchForOurLives #parklandstrong pic.twitter.com/dYZSd6u9M7— Change the Ref (@ChangeTheRef) May 25, 2018
Together we can do anything. Together the young people will win by choosing love. pic.twitter.com/TRrfTJL2Wb— David Hogg (@davidhogg111) May 26, 2018
.@Publix I’m shaking in my boots awaiting your DM.— David Hogg (@davidhogg111) May 25, 2018
After the protest, Publix said in a statement it plans to suspend all political donations.
“At Publix, we respect the students and members of the community who have chosen to express their voices on these issues,” the grocery store said in a statement. “We regret that our contributions have led to a divide in our community. We did not intend to put our associates and the customers they serve in the middle of a political debate. At the same time, we remain committed to maintaining a welcoming shopping environment for our customers.”
“We would never knowingly disappoint our customers or the communities we serve,” the statement continued. “As a result, we decided earlier this week to suspend corporate-funded political contributions as we reevaluate our giving processes.”
This wasn’t Hogg’s first successful boycott. In April, he also successfully convinced 16 companies to pull funding from Laura Ingraham’s Fox News show after she made fun of him for not being accepted by a number of colleges. He was also one of the organizers of the March for Our Lives nationwide protest.
Tess Cagle is a reporter who focuses on politics, lifestyle, and streaming entertainment. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, Texas Monthly, the Austin American-Statesman, Damn Joan, and Community Impact Newspaper. She’s also a portrait, events, and live music photographer in Central Texas.