Missouri Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft (R) published a rule last July restricting the use of ESG in public investment strategies. The Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (SIFMA) filed a lawsuit in August claiming that the regulation conflicted with federal law. Judge Stephen R. Bough of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri last month rejected the state’s request to have the suit dismissed, ruling that SIFMA and its affiliate organizations had grounds to sue. Ashcroft then requested $1.2 million in the state’s 2024 budget to hire a law firm to defend the rule.
Missouri legislators held a hearing last week questioning Ashcroft’s decision to hire the law firm. Opponents argued that the rule and its defense were politically motivated.
Ballotpedia tracks support for and opposition to the environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) investing movement. To learn more about arguments for, against, and about ESG, click here. For more information on reform proposals related to ESG policy, click here.