Image from streetcow.com

Finally, the national media is taking a look at Hillary’s role as a director at Wal-Mart. Back in February 2006 I wondered aloud if Hillary would even run for president, and one of the main reasons I cited was her support for the Iraq War. Oh well, times, er, polls change and Hillary has taken care of that problem. (Ok, not really, but she’s trying) However, I also cited her ties to Wal-Mart. Wal-Mart has become the boogeyman among the left wing activist base, and Hillary’s tenure of their Board of Directors was sure cause a problem. It is clear that the company was using her in the name of diversity and political connections, and she was using them. I’m sure at the time Hillary thought these connections to Wal-Mart would give her business credentials to run on later in life. For today’s Democrats, a Wal-Mart connection is something to run away from. I wonder how much she regrets that decision now.

As I noted in my post, Wal-Mart was not shy of its intentions at the time,

1990 Annual Report
275,000 Associates completed the most explosive decade of growth in WalMart’s history.

1991 Annual Report
A New Decade. A new era for WalMart, an era in which we plan to grow a truly nationwide retailer.

Here is a snapshot of Wal-Mart’s growth during Hillary’s tenure on their board of directors,

Employes grew from 170,000 to 371,000
Sales grew from $11.09 billion to $43.86 billion
Net Income grew from $450 million to $1.60 billion
Retail Space grew from 53 million sq. ft. to well over 110 million sq ft.

How will Hillary answer questions about Wal-Mart from the left wing activists? How will she respond to union members questions about Wal-Mart’s anti-union policies when she is confronted on the campaign trail? I didn’t think she would do well at all back in February 2006, and I think she will do even worse now that the New York Times is writing things like this in tomorrow’s Sunday edition,

On other topics, like Wal-Mart’s vehement anti-unionism, for example, she (Hillary) was largely silent, they said.

Ouch. That’s going to leave a mark. Hillary is too controlled and scripted to talk her way out of this one. This is going to hurt her, IMHO. John Edwards has his own hypocrisy problems, so too does Hillary Clinton. It’s going to be interesting to see how she manages this situation in the days and weeks ahead.

New York Times
Clinton Is Quiet on Her Past Role With Wal-Mart

In 1986, Sam Walton, the founder of Wal-Mart, had a problem. He was under growing pressure from shareholders — and his wife, Helen — to appoint a woman to the company’s 15-member board of directors.

So Mr. Walton turned to a young lawyer who just happened to be married to the governor of Arkansas, where Wal-Mart is based: Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Mrs. Clinton’s six-year tenure as a director of Wal-Mart, the nation’s largest company, remains a little known chapter in her closely scrutinized career. And it is little known for a reason. Mrs. Clinton rarely, if ever, discusses it, leaving her board membership out of her speeches and off her campaign Web site.

Fellow board members and company executives, who have rarely discussed her role in Wal-Mart, say Mrs. Clinton used her position to champion personal causes, like the need for more women in management and a comprehensive environmental program, despite being Wal-Mart’s only female director, the youngest and arguably the least experienced in business.

The LA Times piles on,

At Wal-Mart, Clinton didn’t upset any carts
As a board member, she touted women and the environment but didn’t fight anti-union efforts.