Trumpworld Update: The Tale of the SEC Chair and His Phony Letters

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SEC chairman Jay Clayton favors a policy that restricts the rights of dissenting shareholders. And guess what? So do ordinary folks! According to a pile of letters Clayton produced, anyway:

But a close look at the seven letters Clayton highlighted, and about two dozen others submitted to the SEC by supposedly regular people, shows they are the product of a misleading — and laughably clumsy — public relations campaign by corporate interests.

That retired teacher? Pauline Yee said she never wrote a letter, although the signature was hers. Those military vets? It turns out they’re the brother and cousin of the chairman of 60 Plus Assn., a Virginia advocacy group paid by corporate supporters of the SEC initiative. That single mom? Data embedded in the electronically submitted letter says someone at 60 Plus wrote it. That retired couple? Their son-in-law runs 60 Plus….Then there’s the public servant Clayton mentioned. Marie Reed’s letter has sharp words for proxy advisors, firms that counsel fund companies on how to vote at shareholder meetings. But when reached by phone in California, the retired state worker said she wasn’t familiar with the term. She said the letter originated with a public affairs firm that contacted her out of the blue.

Welcome to Trumpworld. Always lying and always favoring corporate interests. That’s about all you need to know.

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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