News Release

New Legislation Would Protect Shareholders Rights

For Immediate Release:

HARTFORD, March 11 – Due to this winter’s Supreme Court ruling in Citizens United vs. FEC, corporations can now spend unlimited funds on advertisements for or against Members of Congress, without seeking approval or even informing their shareholders.

Investors should have a voice in how the corporations in which they hold shares spend money in politics.

Rep. Mike Capuano (D-MA) has introduced a bill – the Shareholder Protection Act [H. R. 4537] – which requires shareholder approval of political spending, and today, the bill receives a hearing in the House Financial Services Committee.

Investors should be protected from having their money used to support candidates at odds with their values. Investing has expanded over the past few decades, and today nearly one in every two American households owns stocks.

“When we talk about giving shareholders a say in how their money is spent, we are literally talking about the public, not an elite class of investors,” commented ConnPIRG Associate Jenn Hatch.

Rep. Capuano’s Shareholder Protection Act will be a critical component of any legislative package put in place to react to the catastrophic Citizens United decision.

“Congress should quickly support Rep. Capuano’s Shareholder Protection Act and work to attach it to any broader legislative package,” Hatch urged.

“We need to create a world where no one will ever have to wonder if their invested money is supporting a cause they don’t believe in, and the Shareholder Protection Act is a step in the right direction,” she concluded.

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