Advocacy Update: Support for ESOPs Rises on Capitol Hill

You can never have too many friends in Congress. Politics is inherently changeable, and while it may seem that members of Congress have a job for life, in every session many are replaced—sometimes unexpectedly.

Some announce their retirement while others are defeated in primaries or elections. Some resign for health concerns and some leave for other factors entirely. Whatever the reason, a significant number of elected officials don’t return the following session.

(Has one of your representatives retired this year? See the Atlantic’s up-to-date retirement tracker for the latest word.)

Congressional turnover matters to us. We must constantly add new supporters to make up for the ones we will lose.

The good news for our community is that we continue to garner new support on Capitol Hill. The better news is that we continue to gain supporters from members on both sides of the aisle.

Since this session started on January 3, 2018, 32 members of Congress have become first-time supporters of the ESOP model. This support is bipartisan and bicameral. The group breaks down in this way (as of July 31):

  • 23 members (five percent) of the House
  • 9 members (nine percent) of the Senate
  • 16 Republicans
  • 16 Democrats

The percentage of new supporters in the Senate is particularly noteworthy. Another fact that illustrates our support in the Senate: In 14 states, both senators support pro-ESOP legislation.

In another five states, both senators have supported ESOPs in the past, but one or both have yet to support ESOPs this session. Those states are: Arkansas, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, and North Carolina.

If you live in one of these states, please consider inviting these Senators to visit your company—perhaps during October, which is Employee Ownership Month. These Senators have supported us before, and likely will respond positively to a request for renewed support today.

To date, we have support from approximately 40 percent of the members of Congress. This is a huge success and testament to the important role ESOPs play in communities across the country.

Below is the list of the 32 House and Senate members who have joined the ranks of ESOP supporters this session. (The most recent supporters are at the end of the list.) If these individuals represent you in Congress, please consider thanking them for the support:

2017-2018 New ESOP Advocates

  1. Roger Marshall (R-KS)
  2. David Young (R-IA)
  3. Lou Barletta (R-PA)
  4. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA)
  5. Brian Higgins (D-NY)
  6. Jackie Walorski (R-IN)
  7. Derek Kilmer(D-WA)
  8. Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ)
  9. Don Bacon (R-NE)
  10. Deb Fischer (R-NE)
  11. Ruben Gallego (D-AZ)
  12. Scott Des-Jarlais (R-TN)
  13. Christopher Coons (D-DE)
  14. Joe Donnelly (D-IN)
  15. Patty Murray (D-WA)
  16. Ted Lieu (D-CA)
  17. Luis Correa (D-CA)
  18. Jim Banks (R-IN)
  19. Lloyd Smucker (R-PA)
  20. Dina Titus (D-NV)
  21. Mo Brooks (R-AL)
  22. Nydia Velazquez (D-NY)
  23. John Kennedy (R-LA)
  24. Cory Booker (D-NJ)
  25. John Ratcliffe (R-TX)
  26. Vela Filemon (D-TX)
  27. Bruce Poliquin (R-ME)
  28. Thom Tillis (R-NC)
  29. John Faso (R-NY)
  30. Michael Capuano (D-MA)
  31. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL)
  32. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD)