SEC chief faces GOP scrutiny over progressive agenda

Republicans on Capitol Hill are laying the groundwork for how they will oppose President Biden’s increasingly progressive economic agenda. They will make Wall Street’s best cop their poster child for an administration pushing policies that they say are far from the concerns of ordinary Americans and unconstitutional.

The Securities and Exchange Commission, run by former Goldman Sachs investment banker, Gary Gensler, has become the number one enemy of many members of the House and Senate. They say his policies, which include newly proposed rules that enforce progressive edicts on the environment and other social issues near and dear to Democrats, as well as expanded crypto legislation, far exceed his authority.

If the Republican Party takes over Congress, it is planning an all-out attack against Gensler and his leadership in the Securities and Exchange Commission, Fox Business has learned after interviewing several key GOP lawmakers and others involved in Republican politics.

This would likely include forcing Gensler to appear before committee hearings and possibly trying to cut the SEC’s budget, as it did in the past with the Republican-controlled Congress during the Obama administration.

The SEC wants more climate disclosure. Companies prepare to fight

Senator Pat Toomey, Republican of Pennsylvania, questions Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin during a congressional oversight committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, December 10, 2020. (Sarah Selbiger/The Washington Post via AP, Pool/AP Newsroom)

Meanwhile, with the Republican Party remaining in the minority, members began planning their next campaign against the agency and Gensler’s leadership.

Republicans on the Senate Banking Committee, chaired by Senator Pat Tomey, Republican of Pennsylvania, on Thursday sent Gensler a letter criticizing him for his lack of transparency regarding the agency’s proposed rule that, if passed, would require public companies to step up efforts. Climate-related disclosures to remain compliant.

The letter follows Gensler’s tepid response to a request last month that the SEC chief provide answers about the costs associated with the proposal and how imposing climate disclosure could have a chilling effect on oil exploration and increase energy prices.

The request, reviewed by Fox Business, raised the issue that forcing CEOs to take positions on such hot political issues might violate First Amendment rights.

The commission wants the Securities and Exchange Commission to turn over all records of communications related to the proposal between the Securities and Exchange Commission, the White House and federal agencies.

Gary Gensler SEC

Gary Gensler, Chairman of the US Securities and Exchange Commission (Andrew Harrier/Bloomberg/Getty Images)

Gensler’s response did not include specific answers. Instead, he offered committee members to brief committee members on the climate plan, GOP officials told Fox Business.

A spokesperson for Gensler had no comment.

In its most recent edition, Tommy’s new letter called Gensler’s response “totally inadequate and unacceptable,” while noting that any member of the public who submitted a Freedom of Information Act request was entitled to more records than the Securities and Exchange Commission provided to the Senate Committee. Oversight of the committee.

Tommy also said that the Republican Party believes that a recent Supreme Court ruling limits the power of federal agencies, such as the Securities and Exchange Commission, to enact policies that Gensler is pursuing. That could mean that the SEC’s new climate disclosure proposal is unconstitutional.

Republican senators press Biden II committee to withdraw proposed climate disclosure rule

“In West Virginia v. Environmental Protection Agency, the Supreme Court held that the executive branch and its agencies, including financial regulators, could not use innovative and new interpretations of existing law to pretend they had legal authority to support sweeping policy changes that Congress never intended,” the members wrote. Senate. “Unfortunately, it appears that the SEC is trying to act in this way precisely with the climate disclosure rule.”

Tommy will leave the Senate after his term expires in January, but other GOP members of the Banking Committee will continue to press the effort. Gensler’s proposals will face tougher scrutiny if the Republican Party controls the Senate.

SEC President Gary Gensler testifies

Gary Gensler, Chairman of the US Securities and Exchange Commission, testifies before the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee oversight hearing of the US Securities and Exchange Commission on September 14, 2021, in Washington, DC. (Evelyn Hochstein Paul/Getty Images/Getty Images)

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“The Republican Party smells blood in the water, and this treatment for Gensler is just an indication of what’s going to happen,” said a former SEC official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity. “They will definitely pull Mary Shapiro on Gensler if they win the majority.”

Republicans routinely targeted Marie Shapiro during intense hearings about her schedule as Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission for President Obama after the House of Representatives turned red in 2010 until the end of her term in 2012.

Chairman Gensler is scheduled to appear before the Senate Banking Committee at its annual oversight hearing this fall.

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