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Indiana Attorney General makes national impact by leading fight against woke anti-consumer ESG strategies

Potential deceptive and unfair acts and practices

                                   

Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita’s leadership of a 17-state effort opposing the anti-capitalism and anti-consumer schemes of so-called ESG investing has helped prompt action at the federal level.

“Our team here in Indiana works hard to protect liberty, free enterprise and the rule of law,” Attorney General Rokita said. “With servants’ hearts, we aspire each day to defend the interests of individual Hoosiers across the state. And through collaboration with other states, we make a positive difference for all Americans.”

In May, Attorney General Rokita co-led a multistate motion to intervene in the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC’s) dealings with BlackRock, the world's largest asset manager. BlackRock has sought to force a radical climate agenda on American utility companies.

Following that action, a group of 11 U.S. senators has also demanded that FERC investigate BlackRock’s actions — and BlackRock’s CEO has begun backpedaling from the company’s past record.

This month, Attorney General Rokita and other attorneys general penned a letter to BlackRock Mutual Funds trustees warning them of potential deceptive and unfair acts and practices — and violations of state securities laws and state common law. 

ESG investing seeks to impose an “environmental, social and governance” agenda that could not otherwise be implemented through the ballot box.

At least one of the 11 senators demanding the FERC investigation cited the17-state motion to intervene as inspiring the senators’ letter.

Previously, BlackRock has signed onto activist crusades such as Climate Action 100+ (CA100+) and the Net Zero Asset Managers (NZAM) initiatives — which seek to coordinate shareholder voting power across their membership to influence the operations of utilities.

“Ultimately, the radical activists would force utilities to retire all of their gas and coal plants,” Attorney General Rokita said. “But gas and coal represent over 60% of America’s electricity supply. Losing this energy would weaken our country and raise utility bills for regular Americans, including elderly Hoosiers on fixed incomes.”

Further, he added, the ESG strategies diminish the value of retirees’ investment accounts.

According to news reports, BlackRock CEO Larry Fink proposed replacing the term “ESG” with “conscientious capitalism” because of the negative perceptions of the former term.

“Whatever you call it, an investment strategy aimed at achieving woke left-wing outcomes rather than maximizing returns for investors is bad news,” Attorney General Rokita said. “There’s no point trying to put lipstick on that pig.”

Aside from the BlackRock example, Attorney General Rokita has also led efforts against ESG investing in other cases — filing another motion to intervene in a case involving the Vanguard Group, for example, and filing a lawsuit against the Biden administration over a Department of Labor rule.

He also has written an op-ed on the topic.

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