The shoe company New Balance is distancing itself from a $500,000 contribution made by the company's chairman, Jim Davis, to a pro-Mitt Romney Super PAC, Restore Our Future. The controversy stems from Mitt Romney’s opposition to gay marriage and whether or not New Balance supports that position.
The website Change.org ran a petition opposing Davis' support for “anti-gay politicians.” The online petition garnered 2,645 signatures, prompting New Balance to issue a statement on the company web site.
In the statement, New Balance President/CEO Rob DeMartini said, “Earlier this year, a private donation was made by our Chairman to a political action committee that is affiliated with Mitt Romney. First, let me be clear that this was a private donation and not a contribution from New Balance.”
DeMartini added, “Mr. Romney recently signed a pledge that challenges same sex marriage and that has offended many including those in the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community. Mr. Romney's position on this issue is not reflective of Jim Davis', my or New Balance's position and support of the gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgendered community.”