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The Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston is a premier cancer treatment center. The Institute has booked a fundraising gala at Mar a Lago, the Trump-owned resort in Florida.

Some liberal patients at Dana-Farber are very upset about this. The Atlantic tells the story of Alan Guttmacher, a Democrat, a physician and a cancer patient at Dana-Farber.

Learning that Dana-Farber is continuing as a patron of the Trump Organization made Guttmacher feel instantly “less at home, less cared for.” He expects that he “will feel less of a refuge next time I need chemotherapy again.”

And now there’s a lobbying effort to get Dana-Farber to move the event. Doing business with the Trump organization, activists argue, amounts to an endorsement of Trump policies and clashes with Dana-Farber’s stated mission. Dana-Farber so far has said no dice.

The liberal reaction here is something odd. In our editorial we described the phenomenon: “Flexing their muscles in corporate America and the media is a rare way for the out-of-power liberal elite to exert influence these days.”

For a conservative from New York, living in D.C., it’s hard to understand this liberal mindset — this secular search for purity. I buy my gasoline from BP while it lobbies for climate regulations, I listen to Bruce Springsteen while he campaigns for John Kerry, I buy General Electric appliances and stock my freezer at Costco.

But the other interesting story here is the landmine of potential cases like the recent Nordstrom debacle, where consumers of high-end jewelry and clothing declared that Ivanka Trump’s brand was defiling their temple. Eventually, after saying sales dropped, Nordstrom dropped the Ivanka stuff, and the White House angrily responded, saying this was an “attack” on Trump’s “policies.”

So if Dana-Farber, amid the campaign by liberal activists, pulled out of Mar-a-Lago, would that be an “attack” on Trump’s policies?

This is a more sensitive case than Nordstrom.

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Not only is about cancer instead of high heels, Dana-Farber receives federal funding. For instance, here’s a report of a $2.4 million grant from the National Institutes of Health. Dana-Farber also lobbies on many federal issues, including research funding, employee law and hospital rules.

If they pull out, will they incur the wrath of the White House? Will Trump threaten federal funding? Is this fear a consideration in whether they switch venues?

This is a concern for any business that has ever had any relationship with any Trump property. It’s corrupting and crippling, and it’s why Trump needs to sell.

Timothy P. Carney, The Washington Examiner’s commentary editor, can be contacted at tcarney@washingtonexaminer.com. His column appears Tuesday nights on washingtonexaminer.com.

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