RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — A PR memo obtained by Nexstar’s WRIC shows that the LEGO group was prepared to distance itself from key aspects of Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s legislative program during the announcement of their new factory in the state.
The memo, which was accidentally posted publicly, but has now been removed, details talking points for LEGO representatives as the company prepares to break ground on a $1 billion factory in Chesterfield County, which will be its only facility in the United States.
In a section titled “Virginia Politics,” the company details responses to potential questions about the Republican governor’s administration.
For instance, if reporters asked, “How can / Does the LEGO Group, as a brand, support the current Governor’s political agenda?” one response was outlined as follows: “Our commitment is to deliver on our long-standing mission [emphasis LEGO’s] to inspire and develop the builders of tomorrow: children.”
The company also said that the investment “goes beyond the politics of today, globally or locally.”
The LEGO group also anticipated targeted questions about the governor’s executive order that sought to prohibit the teaching of “critical race theory,” a move that has been controversial since the governor’s race last year.
The document did not indicate an explicit stance on the issue, but emphasized that the LEGO company had “donated to organizations that support Black children and educate all children about racial equality.”
The memo also indicated that one of the company’s main reasons for investing in Virginia was its “100 percent carbon neutrality commitment,” in reference to the Virginia Clean Economy Act, which passed under former Gov. Ralph Northam and requires Virginia power producers to invest heavily in renewables to achieve carbon neutrality by 2045.
Gov. Glenn Youngkin has spoken out against the bill repeatedly, and Republicans in the General Assembly tried unsuccessfully to roll back portions of the bill earlier this year.
Both the Governor’s Office and LEGO did not respond to a request for comment before the publication of this story.
LEGO’s memo can be viewed in its entirety at WRIC.