Amid nationwide backlash over Bud Light’s decision to partner with a transgender activist, Donald Trump Jr. has called for an end to the boycott, arguing it isn’t worth “destroying” one of America’s most iconic companies over the beer brewer’s “bizarre” ad campaign.
During his “Triggered with Donald Trump Jr.” podcast Thursday, the eldest son of former President Donald Trump said people are angry, “and justifiably so,” due to the company using transgender activist Dylan Mulvaney in a promotional campaign.
“We’ve all seen the backlash that Budweiser is facing over the trans-marketing scheme; the internet melted down,” Trump Jr. said. “So … what on earth are they doing with a trans-TikToker in a bathtub—it’s bizarre. Is this a one-off colossal screw-up, or is it something bigger?”
The 45-year-old said the company’s decision to partner with Mulvaney, a biological male, could be “the act of one rogue … lunatic in a marketing department filled with leftist staffers” rather than the decision of senior executives.
Trump Jr. discussed this claim by addressing recent reports, citing anonymous sources, that claimed company executives were kept in the dark about the Mulvaney sponsorship deal.
The younger Trump also said he’s calling for an end to the boycott after researching the history of the business’s political donations and lobbying efforts, explaining further that he found the St. Louis-based beer brewer helped Republicans more than Democrats.
“Last cycle, their employees and their PAC gave about 60 percent to Republicans and 40 percent to Democrats. That’s literally almost unheard of in corporate America, where it’s really easy to go woke, where they do so constantly, where there’s a consequence to actually being a conservative. So 60/40 to the conservative side is kind of a big deal,” Trump Jr. said.
“I’m not going to blame the whole company for the inaction or the stupidity of someone in a marketing campaign that got woke … The company itself doesn’t participate in the same leftist nonsense as the other big conglomerates.”
However, if the beer company would decide to make a move like that again, “then it’s on them,” Trump Jr. said.
“So, they’ve been put on notice. I’m leaving them alone. I think you should probably do the same; if they do it again—they’ve been warned,” he continued.
The company’s decision to partner with the transgender individual alienated loyal Bud Light drinkers and saw shares of the company crash by almost 5 percent since the start of April. In less than two weeks, at least $6.65 billion of Anheuser-Busch’s market capitalization had been wiped out.
On Friday, Anheuser-Busch InBev CEO Brendan Whitworth issued the first public statement since the controversy started brewing, saying the company “never intended to be part of a discussion that divides people.”
Whitworth did not specifically mention Mulvaney, Bud Light, or transgender issues. He also did not address reports of boycotts or distributors being worried about low sales.
“I care deeply about this country, this company, our brands and our partners. I spend much of my time traveling across America, listening to and learning from our customers, distributors and others,” his statement said. “Moving forward, I will continue to work tirelessly to bring great beers to consumers across our nation.”
Previously, Anheuser-Busch issued a statement to news outlets and defended its move to hire Mulvaney, who also has reported deals with Nike and other brands.
“Anheuser-Busch works with hundreds of influencers across our brands as one of many ways to authentically connect with audiences across various demographics,” a spokesperson said earlier this month in response to the backlash.
Industry analysts with the Beer Business Daily wrote that “the intense opposition to Mulvaney promoting the beer has been alarming to Anheuser-Busch distributors, which placed fewer orders after the partnership sparked outrage from conservatives who argued the company is pushing ‘gender propaganda.'”
Some analysts and investors, meanwhile, said that the damage likely won’t sink Anheuser-Busch, but the damage has been done to the Bud Light brand.
“I simply don’t understand why they hired the person who was doing the marketing,” Oxygen Financial CEO Ted Jenkin told Fox News Thursday. “I mean, if your target customer is Kid Rock, and then all of a sudden you decide to go to RuPaul, that just doesn’t make any sense at all.”
Epoch Times reporter Jack Phillips contributed to this report.
From NTD News