The resolution passed 52-47 along party lines [gasp], with Republicans voting to disapprove of the rule and Democrats defending it.
The rule — “Disclosure of Payments by Resource Extraction Issuers” — mandates that oil, natural gas and mineral companies disclose to the SEC any financial dealings with foreign governments in an annual report.
Proponents of the rule say it’s aimed to prevent companies from bribing foreign governments and taking part in other forms of corruption, but opponents argue it creates undue burdens on American companies and puts them at a competitive disadvantage [Boo-Hoo!!].
The American Petroleum Institute applauded action in Congress this week to hammer away at the rule.
“Today’s House vote is a necessary step by Congress to establish sensible regulations that balance increasing transparency without diminishing our industry’s competitive advantage,” API Director of Tax Policy Stephen Comstock said in a statement. “The SEC’s rule fundamentally harms American workers and shareholders.” [seriously, is anyone buying this?]
Attacking their Republican colleagues, some Democratic senators were quick to draw a link between the outcome of the vote and the new secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, a former CEO of ExxonMobil.
“It should be lost on no one that in less than 48 hours, the Republican-controlled Senate has confirmed the former head of ExxonMobil to serve as our secretary of state and repealed a key anti-corruption rule that ExxonMobil and the American Petroleum Institute have erroneously fought for years,” said Sen. Ben Cardin, D-Maryland, in a statement. [Uh, ya think?!]