As the Illinois senator prepared to join the presidential race late last year, he claimed to agree with the union-backed campaign against Wal-Mart. He declared that there was a “moral responsibility to stand up and fight” the company and “force them to examine their own corporate values.”
Obama’s wife is a non-executive director on the board of Treehouse Foods — whose biggest customer for the pickles and peppers they produce is Wal-Mart.
Mrs. Obama has praised her husband’s “moral compass,” reflecting a key message of his campaign that has promised a “change from politics as usual.”
Earlier this year, in response to a newspaper investigation, he said he was unaware that his broker had bought $50,000 worth of stock in two speculative companies whose leading investors included some of his biggest political donors.
He also had to apologize for a “boneheaded error” in striking a property deal with Tony Rezko, a Chicago Democrat operative facing federal indictment.