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Friday, July 14, 2023

Rep. Magaziner Pushes Back Against Republican Attacks on Socially Responsible Investing

Argues sensible investing protects pensioners from liability

Representative Seth Magaziner (RI-02), a founding member of the Congressional Sustainable Investment Caucus, joined his colleagues in condemning Republicans’ attacks on worker and retiree savings through their misguided war on “ESG investing.”

Republicans on the House Financial Services Committee have declared July “ESG month,” voting on bills that will erode the retirement savings of working people by forbidding investors from considering environmental, social or corporate governance (ESG) risks that companies face when making investment decisions. 

Research has shown that companies that take steps to mitigate their environmental footprint, invest in consumer and workplace safety, and promote corporate diversity, among other ESG factors, tend to outperform their peers over the long-term. 

However, congressional Republicans remain determined to advance culture wars at the expense of working people by banning ESG considerations from investing.  

“As Rhode Island’s Treasurer for eight years, I have seen how sustainable investment practices protected teachers, first responders, and thousands of other working people from the risks inherent in bad business practices that pollute the environment, threaten employee and consumer well-being and fail to manage risk appropriately, " said Rep. Magaziner.

“Attacking investors who wisely use these factors in their decision-making will help Big Oil and their benefactors delay the clean energy transition, and it will cost investors and consumers in the long run,” Magaziner continued. 

“Republicans want to spend the month silencing the voices of investors who just want to make their own investment decisions in a free and fair market.”

As of 2022, there were $8.4 trillion in U.S. assets under management in funds that prioritize environmental social and governance (ESG) factors. Globally, the value of assets engaged in sustainable investing is estimated at $41 trillion.