GOP-leaning Wal-Mart brings in Obama bundler

By Laurie Bennett

April 17, 2012 at 9:08am

Wal-Mart is adding some political diversity to its board by nominating Google’s Marissa Mayer as a new director.

Mayer, 36, is vice president of Google Local and Maps. She’s also a fundraiser for the 2012 Obama campaign.

This puts her at the opposite end of the spectrum from members of the Walton family, who tend to support Republican candidates and make big donations to GOP super PACs. The family foundation funds many conservative causes.

Marissa Mayer
Marissa Mayer

The company, while leaning Republican, has upped its giving to Democrats during the Obama administration.

An analysis of Wal-Mart contributions by the Center for Responsive Politics shows that in the 2012 election cycle, 55 percent of the contributions went to Republicans and 45 percent to Democrats.

The ratio was nearly the same in the 2008 cycle.

If elected at the company’s annual meeting on June 1, Mayer won’t be the first Obama supporter to join the Wal-Mart board. Christopher Williams, chairman of William Capital, was a big donor to Obama Victory Fund 2012.

Neither will she be the first well-known Democrat to sit on the board. Hillary Rodham Clinton was a Wal-Mart director for six years, from 1986 to 1992.

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