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• The Los Angeles Times reports that Walmart has ended its relationship with Mercury Public Affairs, the PR firm it had hired to lobby Los Angeles officials about a store that has been proposed for the city's Chinatown neighborhood. The firing of Mercury came after one of its employees, Stephanie Harnett, attended a closed press conference being held by a pro-labor group in Los Angeles that is opposing the store and represented herself to be a student reporter from USC.

Walmart condemned Harnett's actions as being “contrary to our values and the way we do business," and the PR firm, Mercury Public Affairs,said that her actions were "in no way approved, authorized, or directed by Wal-Mart or Mercury," and that she no longer worked for the company.

"We take this matter seriously and have taken the appropriate steps to ensure this type of activity is not repeated," said Walmart spokesman Steven Restivo.
KC's View:
I have no idea if Walmart knew about the deception before it happened, or had an unstated agreement with mercury that supported the move ... as long as nobody got caught.

But the fact is, somebody got caught. Which is why Harnett got fired, and then Mercury got fired.

This is the way things work. There's always a scapegoat.

Let's see who gets fired in Walmart's bribery scandal...