The office of the commissioner of Major League Baseball PAC donated the legal maximum, $5,000, to U.S. Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith, R-Miss ahead of Mississippi’s special election. But the league has requested for the donation to be returned.
“The contribution was made in connection with an event that MLB lobbyists were asked to attend. MLB has requested that the contribution be returned,” a league spokesperson said in a statement, via ESPN.
From MLB spokesperson, about the $5,000 donation to Senate candidate Cindy Hyde-Smith: “The contribution was made in connection with an event that MLB lobbyists were asked to attend. MLB has requested that the contribution be returned.”
— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) November 25, 2018
The news comes on the heels of several major corporations, including Walmart, Union Pacific and AT&T, asking Hyde-Smith to refund their contributions, according to Popular Information.
Hyde-Smith recently told a crowd at a campaign event that she would be in the “front row” of a “public hanging,” if invited. She has been campaigning in a runoff against Democrat Mike Espy on Nov. 27.
The MLB’s most recent donation to her campaign was filed on Nov. 24 and dated for the previous day.
This isn’t the first time the league has made financial contributions to Hyde-Smith. The PAC also donated $2,500 on June 30.
The Popular Information report also stated Charles B. Johnson, the co-owner of the Giants, recently donated $2,700, the legal maximum to Hyde-Smith; and his wife, Ann, also contributed the maximum to her campaign.
These donations have sparked outrage from baseball fans, who are posting pictures online of canceled league subscriptions and calling on MLB and commissioner Rob Manfred to address the donations.
A full list of MLB’s political contributions can be found here.