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GOP Lawmakers Propose Bill To Stop Taxpayer Dollars From Going Toward ‘Woke’ Investment Funds

   DailyWire.com
WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 22: Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX) speaks at a news conference about the National Defense Authorization Bill at the U.S. Capitol on September 22, 2021 in Washington, DC.
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Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX) and seven other Republicans lawmakers proposed legislation on Friday to stop taxpayer dollars from going toward Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) funds.

Earlier this week, an exclusive Daily Wire poll conducted by Echelon Insights showed that Americans want companies they invest in to stop preaching and to instead pursue profits. While 29% of respondents agreed it is a “good thing” for companies to leverage their financial power for political or social means supported by executives, 58% — twice as many — said it is a “bad thing.” The Daily Wire poll found that most investors prefer to focus on profits instead of ESG when they choose their own assets — and most believe that other investors should have the same opportunity.

Roy’s “No ESG at TSP Act,” proposed the day after The Daily Wire poll was released, would stop the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) — a retirement savings plan for federal employees and the largest defined contribution plan in the world — from flowing into ESG funds.

“ESG investing is a woke scam. It restricts the free flow of capital, undermines U.S. energy freedom to the benefit of our enemies, and advances woke racial and gender ideologies intent on dividing the republic,” Roy argued in a press release to The Daily Wire. “The upcoming changes to TSP would allow billions of taxpayer dollars to serve these ends. The federal government shouldn’t have any part in this radical nonsense, and especially shouldn’t be using your money to do it.”

In a Friday interview with “Morning Wire,” entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy explained that investors often do not want their savings leveraged for political purposes. As Ramaswamy discussed, there is a “principal agent conflict” at play when “the person who speaks on behalf of the client is saying things to corporate America that the client himself would not want to say.”

Indeed, asset managers like BlackRock, State Street, Vanguard — which oversee a collective $21 trillion in capital — often pressure companies they hold to pursue racial or gender-based quota systems, diversity programs, and other political initiatives.

“You might ask the question of why it is that those large firms are doing what they do. And this is really just a form of crony capitalism,” Ramaswamy diagnosed. “What they get in return is government favors.”

Ramaswamy observed that many large asset managers have been the recipients of cushy arrangements with the federal government.

“I mean, if you look at who got to administer the COVID-19 stimulus packages, it was none other than BlackRock — that’s a pretty profitable business to be in,” he said. “If you look at who staffs the Biden administration, including the Treasury Department, including in the Council of Economic Advisors, including the vice president’s staff — a lot of BlackRock alumni. They are doing what the party in power wants them to do in return for favors that allow them to aggregate greater not only profit, but greater power.”

What is the most realistic way for investors to opt out of ESG-style investments — a right that 66% of investors supported in The Daily Wire poll? According to Ramaswamy, look no further than market competition.

“That doesn’t exist today… Do I think that citizens should be able to have their capital invested in ways that take their voice and their preferred advocacy behavior into account by their asset managers? Absolutely,” he said. “I think that that reform is coming, but it’s only going to come because of actual market competition. Not because we wish it into existence.”

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