Both chambers of the United States Congress recently came together in bipartisan fashion to protect the American people against a conspiracy to weaponize their retirement accounts. Thanks to efforts led by Advancing American Freedom (AAF), a resolution to overturn Biden’s “woke 401(k) rule” is now on its way to the Resolute Desk.
While many had been sleeping on this issue, bureaucrats at international institutions, state governments, and agencies across the U.S. government were pushing financial institutions away from their fiduciary standards for decades towards a dangerous politically-driven investment standard known as Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG). While the old standard formed a bond of trust between an American and the institutions that handled his or her hard-earned money, the new standard of ESG empowered bad actors (and coerced otherwise well-meaning ones) into poor investment decisions based not on the expectation of return in value but an attempt to use peoples’ savings to push certain Leftist values on the free market.
In Nov. 2022, the Biden administration, the chief culprit in pushing the ESG agenda, sought to overturn that golden standard of fiduciary duty to American workers by encouraging the managers of their pension funds and 401(k) retirement accounts to pour their life’s savings into a risky set of investments that score highly on the arbitrary ESG standards set by unaccountable activists and bureaucrats.
Fortunately, Senator Mike Braun and Congressman Andy Barr led a bold congressional initiative to overturn the Biden administration’s dangerous ESG rule through the Congressional Review Act (CRA), which allows Congress to strike down bad rules recently issued by the federal government. AAF created a national advocacy campaign in support of the CRA, garnering bipartisan support in the House and the Senate through targeted advertisements, grassroots activism, and coalition leadership. As a result of AAF’s campaign, Senator Manchin (D-WV) cosponsored the effort and Senator Tester (D-MT) supported it on the Senate floor.
Despite the bipartisan support for the rollback of this rule, President Biden has broadcasted his intentions to betray the popular will and the interests of the American people by issuing the first veto of his administration. In doing so, he is sending a clear message that his progressive agenda is a higher priority than the financial security of more than 150 million Americans. For an administration that attempts to brand itself as “the most pro-worker Administration in history,” the actions of the Biden administration, made manifest in this announced veto, say otherwise.
It is a tenet of a free society that people be able to use their own money as they see fit. Forcing Americans into ESG investment strategies is not only politically inappropriate; it is fiscally irresponsible. Conservatives have taken the first steps to secure Americans’ financial futures, and now we are calling on President Biden to sign the joint resolution and rebuke pension politics.
Tim Chapman is a Senior Advisor at Advancing American Freedom, a public policy advocacy organization founded by Vice President Mike Pence. He is also a Principal at P2 Public Affairs where he works with clients to build national campaigns to influence public policy. Paul Teller is Executive Director of Advancing American Freedom and previously served with Vice President Pence in the Trump-Pence White House.
The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of the Daily Caller.