House fails to override Biden's first veto

A new administration rule for retirement plans will be implemented as planned after the House failed to override President Joe Biden’s first veto on Thursday.

In a 219-200 vote, the House fell short of the two-thirds majority needed in each chamber to undo a presidential veto. The outcome was largely expected since the measure initially passed with slim margins in both the House and Senate.

Congress this month sent Biden a bipartisan measure that would have blocked a Labor Department rule allowing some retirement plans to weigh environmental, social and corporate governance factors when selecting investments, instead of focusing solely on the best rate of return.

The GOP-led House had approved the bill in a 216-204 vote, while the Senate passed it 50-46, with Democratic Sens. Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Jon Tester of Montana joining Republicans.

Biden vetoed the measure on Monday.

In a video explaining his decision, Biden said the legislation would put retirement savings “at risk.”

“They couldn’t take into consideration investments that would be impacted by climate, impacted by overpaying executives and that’s why I decided to veto it,” Biden said.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., called Biden’s veto “totally appropriate” in a statement Monday that criticized Republicans over their attempts to block the investment rule.

“For House Republicans to tell American companies they cannot pursue profits and societal goals when they wish to would be counterproductive and un-American,” Schumer said.

The Senate will not take up the veto-override measure since it has already failed in the House.

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