Budweiser's new pro-America advertisement sparked heated debate on Twitter over the weekend, as critics accused the company of making a misguided attempt to quell the backlash from Bud Light's endorsement partnership with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney.
Budweiser released its latest advertisement on social media Friday, showcasing a Clydesdale horse journeying across the United States from New York City to the Grand Canyon. The ad features iconic American landmarks, small towns, and farmland, with a narrator delivering a patriotic message throughout. The ad, which references September 11, was intended to bring people together, according to Anheuser-Busch CEO Brendan Whitworth.
However, the patriotic advertisement comes as Anheuser-Busch, owner of Budweiser, faces ongoing backlash over a partnership between Bud Light and Mulvaney. This partnership has led to significant financial losses for the brand and widespread calls for a boycott. Although the new ad aims to shift focus from the controversial partnership with patriotic imagery and messaging, critics online have argued that Budweiser's attempt to regain support is in poor taste and have urged the company to apologize instead.
Prominent figures like Red State senior editor Brandon Morse and actor Matthew Marsden have taken to Twitter to criticize the advertisement. Detransition activist Oli London called attention to Anheuser-Busch's failure to apologize for the backlash, while Judicial Watch president Tom Fitton accused corporate owners of trying to pretend their support of a "transgender extremist" never happened. Others, including comedian Tom Dillon, mocked the company for attempting to pander to conservatives.
In a statement issued Friday, Anheuser-Busch CEO Brendan Whitworth addressed the controversy for the first time, saying the company never intended to divide people but stopped short of apologizing for the Mulvaney campaign. Whitworth emphasized the company's goal of bringing people together over a beer and its long-standing commitment to supporting communities, the military, first responders, sports fans, and hard-working Americans.
As reported by Rebel News, Bud Light reportedly paused its partnerships with social media influencers due to the Dylan Mulvaney backlash.