The NY State Senate Democrats had to return a $15,000 donation from mega retailer Walmart after labor union leaders freaked out. According to the Post, "The action came just days after last week's disclosure in The Post that the Democrats had accepted the cash from the union-resisting Arkansas-based retail chain, which is believed to be interested in putting its first city store in Senate Democratic Leader John Sampson's Brooklyn district." A spokesman for Sampson, who also heads the Senate Democratic Campaign Committee, said, "I can confirm that the money was returned. That's as far as I'm going to go on it."

Walmart has been trying to move in the New York City market for many years, even running ads trying to convince New Yorkers it's needed, but the company's labor practices have prevented it from gaining much traction from most local politicians. The Post says the donation "was...seen by government reformers as further evidence of the Legislature's 'pay to play' culture that led Senate Democrats earlier this year to offer labor leaders special 'advisory committee chairmanships' for $50,000 a piece." Retail and Wholesale Workers Union President Stuart Appelbaum, who called the $15,000 "blood money," said that by returning the donation, Senate Democrats "are standing up for working people and communities. They are sending a loud message that Walmart is still not welcome in New York City."

Earlier this year, Queens locals became very upset by a fake Walmart ad in the Queens Tribune.