ALG opposes turning retirement funds into political slush funds

Oct. 23, 2015, Fairfax, Va.—Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning today issued the following statement in opposition to so-called socially responsible investing being included in 401(k)s by the U.S. Labor Department:

“The only criteria fiduciaries should use for 401(k) and pension funds is the suitability and profitability of an investment.  The goal of these funds is to provide retirement security for workers, and the Labor Department’s newly issued interpretation that allows so-called socially responsible investing, to be a factor in these investment decisions is nothing less than playing politics with retirement funds.  Look no further than the inclusion of the SEIU’s CFO in Secretary Perez’ media announcement and it is clear that this is a political play and not a financially sound one.  If Perez was honest, he would have confronted the SEIU about their failure to protect union member pensions, as two of their local pension funds are one and two on the Labor Department’s Critical Status Notices, and are at risk of failing.

“The Obama Administration’s attempt to turn retirement dollars into a slush fund for whatever the liberal cause of the moment is, sets a dangerous course for every American who wants assurance that the options they are provided are based upon likelihood of success, and not a veiled attempt to funnel money to far left or politically favored companies.

“Prior to the announced changes, so-called socially responsible investments were allowed if they were equal to other investment options in terms of potential return. Now, Perez is turning this on its head with language suggesting that fiduciaries are to consider this, not just as collateral factors, but as the ‘proper components of the fiduciary’s primary analysis.’ Americans for Limited Government will use every lever at our disposal to overturn this disastrous and dangerous decision.”

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