Biden’s veto was used to kill a bipartisan measure that would have saved a lot of retirement accounts. This decision has raised questions among both sides of the aisle regarding the potential implications this could have on the economy going forward.
As President Joe Biden used his veto power for the first time in his administration on Monday, he killed a bipartisan resolution that would have reversed a Department of Labor rule that prioritizes ESG standards over profitability for retirement accounts.
In November last year, the US Department of Labor implemented the Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) rule, which allows retirement plan managers to consider environmental and social factors when making investment decisions as opposed to focusing only on financial factors.
In response, Congress passed bipartisan legislation that would nullify the department’s rule.
The Democratic-led Senate voted to overturn the Labor Department’s final rule as well, which Biden conveniently omitted. Biden claimed it was solely the work of the “MAGA House Republicans” and Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), which is incorrect. Greene was among the 216 bipartisan House members who voted for the resolution, as did the Senate, which is controlled by Biden’s party.
Republicans everywhere reacted to Biden’s veto.
House Speaker Kevin McCarthy tweeted, “In his first veto, Biden just sided with Wall Street over workers. Tells you exactly where his priorities lie. Now—despite a bipartisan vote to block his ESG agenda—it’s clear Biden wants Wall Street to use your retirement savings to fund his far-left political causes.”
Presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy added, “The fact that Biden’s first veto is about promoting ESG reveals the problem: this isn’t the invisible hand of the “free market.” It’s the invisible fist of government. Don’t fall for their trick.”
Senator Tom Cotton tweeted, “Joe Biden’s first veto as president: letting retirement fund managers prioritize ESG scams over the best-performing investments. Why is he playing games with working people’s retirement money?”
Democrat Senator Joe Manchin (WV) also took a swipe at the White House, saying the Biden administration “continues to prioritize their radical policy agenda over the economic, energy and national security needs of our country, and it is absolutely infuriating.”
Considering the nature of this rule and its far-reaching implications, it is understandable why both parties have expressed concern about President Biden’s decision. It will be interesting to see how this plays out in the weeks and months ahead, as well as how Congress might respond if he chooses to use this power again in the future. The only thing that’s certain right now is that President Biden’s first exercise of his veto pen has left many questions unanswered, especially since he used it against a bipartisan bill.
Let’s continue this conversation, in the comments below.