The US Senate has voted to overturn the US Department of Labor’s (DOL) new rule that confirms evaluating ESG factors in investment selection is consistent with fiduciary duty. But US President Joe Biden is expected to veto this, said Steven Rothstein, Managing Director of the Ceres Accelerator for Sustainable Capital Markets, operated by the Ceres investor network. Although the Democrats have a majority in the Senate, the challenge from Republicans passed as Democrat US Senators Joe Machin and Jon Tester voted in favour, and another two Democrat senators were ill, said Rothstein. Bryan McGannon, Managing Director of US SIF: The Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment, said it urged the US President to quickly veto the resolution. Josh Zinner, CEO of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR), accused Republican lawmakers with ties to oil and gas of weaponising the rule as part of a broader campaign to vilify ESG investing as “woke”, which he called “a dog whistle for right-wing groups with a regressive social and environmental agenda”.
“We urge @POTUS to quickly veto the resolution and allow the marketplace to continue to fulfill their #FiduciaryDuty to plan participants and meet the growing demand for #Sustainable offerings in retirement plans.” – @bryanmcgannon, @US_SIF https://t.co/Uv07NK6uvv
— US SIF (@US_SIF) March 1, 2023