A conservative legal group led by former Trump Administration official Stephen Miller filed a lawsuit on Tuesday against Target, alleging that the company misrepresented its risk monitoring capabilities in response to backlash resulting from the sale of LGBTQ-themed merchandise.
Representing investor Brian Craig, American First Legal has filed a lawsuit in federal court in Florida against Target, Chief Executive Brian Cornell, and Target’s board of directors, Reuters reports.
In recent years, Republicans and extreme right-wingers have become increasingly critical of companies that affirm the rights of LGBTQ+ people.
In his complaint, Craig claimed that Target’s board had misrepresented the extent of its oversight of the company’s “social and political risks,” instead focusing on the agendas of progressive activists rather than the foreseeable backlash from consumers.
Earlier this year, Target recalled some merchandise related to Pride Month in May due to increasing confrontations between disgruntled customers and employees, including throwing products and threats of violence.
Craig, who owns 216 Target shares (which are worth approximately $29,000 as of publication), claimed the company’s board was not paying sufficient attention to social, political, and environmental risks while focusing solely on the company’s ESG, diversity, equity, and inclusion objectives.
Craig said the board “misrepresented its oversight because it monitored only one side.”
Besides seeking damages from Target for its share price slump, Craig also asks that a judge issue a ruling that the company broke U.S. securities laws during its stock price slump.
Florida’s extremist Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis, who has made attacks on the LGBTQ+ community a centerpiece of his campaign for the 2024 Republican nomination for president, recently floated the idea of bringing legal action against Anheuser-Bush for financial losses in state investments.
Conservatives were outraged that Bud Light engaged in a social media promotion with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney and boycotted the brand, leading to a dip in revenue.