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New Balance's Trump comment sparks fiery outrage, pledges to buy

An employee prepares to stitch backtabs on a pair of New Balance shoes in Skowhegan, Maine.
Ben McCanna | Portland Press Herald | Getty Images
An employee prepares to stitch backtabs on a pair of New Balance shoes in Skowhegan, Maine.

Shoe company New Balance got a taste of the sharp division surrounding U.S. President-elect Donald Trump's surprise win this week after its comments about his impending presidency sparked both backlash and pledges of support.

"The Obama administration turned a deaf ear to us and frankly, with President-elect Trump, we feel things are going to move in the right direction," Matthew LeBretton, New Balance's vice president of public affairs, told The Wall Street Journal on Wednesday.

Some customers took to social media to express their unhappiness with the company's stance and announced their plans to protest the move by boycotting or throwing out their New Balance shoes.

Other customers took the opposite reaction and said the move would lead them to buy more shoes from the company.


LeBretton's decision to support Trump had been, in part, because of Trump's opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement, which would phase out some tariffs on shoes made in Vietnam and thus benefit companies that import shoes, such as Nike and Adidas, NPR reported.

However, according to the U.K.'s Daily Mirror newspaper, New Balance's vice president has since attempted to cool the Trump rhetoricm insisting his remarks were taken out of context. New Balance was not immediately available for comment.