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Financial Services Committee Republicans Form ESG Working Group

Government Affairs

House Republicans will establish a working group to “combat the threat to our capital markets posed by those on the far-left pushing environmental, social, and governance (ESG) proposals,” Patrick McHenry, (R-NC), Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, announced Friday.

Led by Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee Chairman Bill Huizenga (R-M)), members say it’s “committed to protecting the financial interests of everyday investors and ensuring American capital markets remain the envy of the world.”

It’s the latest salvo in a series fired by Republicans against the investment strategy. In late January, a coalition of red state attorneys general filed a lawsuit to stop the Labor Department’s ESG regulation days before its implementation. 

“Progressives are trying to do with American businesses what they already did to our public education system—using our institutions to force their far-left ideology on the American people,” McHenry said in a statement. “Their latest tool in these efforts is environmental, social, and governance proposals. This is why I am creating a Republican ESG working group led by Oversight & Investigations Subcommittee Chair Bill Huizenga. 

“Last year, the Supreme Court ruled in West Virginia vs. EPA that government bureaucracies cannot arbitrarily expand their own regulatory reach,” Huizenga added. “The SEC’s climate disclosure rule is a prime example of this overreach that would have a wide-ranging impact on hard-working Americans across all walks of life. I look forward to leading our committee’s ESG working group, which will focus on promoting strong, vibrant capital markets while defending the interests of all retail investors.”

ESG Working Group Members

  • Bill Huizenga (Mich.-04)
  • Ann Wagner (Mo.-02)
  • Barry Loudermilk (Ga.-11)
  • Bryan Steil (Wisc.-01)
  • Andrew Garbarino (N.Y.-02)
  • Byron Donalds (Fla.-19)
  • Monica De La Cruz (Texas-15)
  • Erin Houchin (Ind.-09)
  • Andy Ogles (Tenn.-05)

The working group said in plans to: 

  • Rein in the SEC’s “regulatory overreach;”
  • Reinforce the materiality standard as “a pillar of our disclosure regime;”
  • “And hold to account market participants who misuse the proxy process or their outsized influence to impose ideological preferences in ways that circumvent democratic lawmaking.”

“The far-left is forcing their ideology on the American people,” Houchin tweeted. “As a member of the @FinancialCmte’s ESG Working Group, I’ll work to protect the financial interests of everyday Hoosiers from harmful proposals.”