Publix is back in the political arena.
The Lakeland-based grocery chain donated $33,000 to Florida lawmakers in February, the company’s first contributions since halting all political giving last year during a national firestorm related to the Parkland shooting.
Last May, Publix generated significant backlash after the Tampa Bay Times reported that the company and its current and former leaders and founders had donated $670,000 to Adam Putnam’s campaign for governor. It was the most by far that Publix had ever donated to a single political campaign.
Gun violence survivors and activists were outraged that the popular supermarket chain had thrown its support behind Putnam in the wake of the deadly shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland. Putnam, a Republican, declared himself a “proud NRA sellout” in 2017.