Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey Signs Anti-ESG Bill

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Jack Moore Contributor
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Alabama joined a growing list of states that have passed laws restricting power over environmental, social, and governance (ESG) movements pushed by corporations.

Republican Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey on Tuesday signed into law Senate Bill 261, which significantly restricts state governmental entities’ financial relations with corporations until certain qualifications are met. Government bodies now have restrictions on financial relationships with companies that meet the bill’s specified qualifications. Any business that has more than 10 employees and receives at least $15,000 from the state of Alabama is required to have contractual provisions on economic boycotts.

“Alabama will continue protecting both our values and our businesses. Alabama citizens, in no way, shape or form, want ESG influencing business in our state, and this legislation most certainly sends that message,” Ivey said in a press release.

ESG investment and corporate practice has vastly expanded over the past seven years since “The Compact for Responsive and Responsible Leadership” was signed at the World Economic Forum in 2017. Since then, scores of CEOs and corporations have adopted forms of social activism in their business practices.

Nike recently invited a child sex-change surgeon to be a speaker during Pride Month, and Major League Baseball changed its logo to reflect support for Pride.. Along with the legal backlash from state legislatures and governors, grassroots responses from consumers have heavily damaged companies like Bud Light and Target. (RELATED: Target Loses $9 Billion In Market Value In A Week Following Boycott Over LGBT Merchandise)

Other states such as Florida, Utah and Texas have already moved forward with their own legislation targeting ESG. After signing an anti-ESG bill in March, Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbot sent a letter to President Joe Biden, defending the energy industry in particular. (Related: DAVID BLACKMON: Is Texas Turning Its Back On Renewable Energy?)

At the national level, Republican Kentucky Rep. Anthony Barr proposed and passed an anti-ESG bill in the House of Representatives, signaling Congress has the will to address the issue despite a President Joe Biden veto.