Amy Klobuchar on Corporations
DFL Sr Senator (MN); Democratic presidential contender
Consolidation of business leading to startup slump
I was in the private sector for 14 years. What I saw was when we got more competition there the prices went down in a big way. Right now we have another gilded age going on. The issue here is this, start talking about this as a pro competition issue.
This used to be a Republican and Democratic issue because our founding fathers wanted to have less consolidation. We were a place of entrepreneurship. We are seeing a startup slump in this country and this means everything from tech on dow
Source: October Democratic CNN/NYTimes Primary debate
, Oct 15, 2019
Update law, but treat tech companies on case by case basis
Q: Elizabeth Warren wants to break up tech companies. Do you?
A: I've been trying to use antitrust law and make changes there. Some of them you may spin off parts of the companies, some of them you may break off. But I think you should do it by getting
those things investigated and figure out which company is doing what. I would then change the law so that no longer does the government have to prove that it reduces competition; the companies have to prove that they don't materially reduce competition.
Source: NPR Morning Edition, "Election 2020: Opening Arguments"
, Mar 19, 2019
Put burden of proof on competitiveness on companies
I would change the standards under the law so that no longer does the government have to prove that it reduces competition to throw something out; that in fact the companies have to prove that they don't materially reduce competition, which is also a
language change to the standard, and also that you can look back at deals like what Facebook just did by buying Instagram and other apps, that you can look to see, even though they already did it, is that anti-competitive?
Source: NPR Morning Edition: Election 2020 Special Series
, Mar 19, 2019
I helped avoid closing 28 profitable MN car dealerships
The incumbent's first television commercial this year promoted her work in saving Minnesota car dealer jobs. She said that as a member of the Senate Commerce Committee, car dealer representatives approached her for help after big car
makers began ordering some local dealers to close. "They were unilaterally shutting down these dealerships that were profitable," Klobuchar said, taking credit for saving 28 Minnesota dealerships.
Source: West Central Tribune Ad-Watch on 2012 MN Senate debate
, Oct 20, 2012
Screen imports & ban lead in children's products.
Klobuchar co-sponsored screening imports & ban lead in children's products
A bill to reform the Consumer Product Safety Commission to provide greater protection for children's products, to improve the screening of non-compliant consumer products, to improve the effectiveness of consumer product recall programs, and for other purposes.
House version is H.R.4040.
Source: CPSC Reform Act (S.2663) 08-S2663 on Feb 25, 2008
- Requires third party certification of, and provides for tracking and record keeping regarding, children's products.
- [Increase] reporting of substantial product hazards and corrective action plans.
- Requires certain manufacturers or distributors to post an escrow or proof of insurance to cover recalls.
- Allows enforcement by state attorneys general and provides public and private sector whistleblower protections.
- Bans children's products containing lead and lowers the allowable lead content in paint.
- Requires a study of preventable injuries and deaths of minority children related to consumer products.
Requires a cost-benefit analysis under the Poison Prevention Packaging Act.
- Requires development of a risk assessment methodology regarding imports.
- Requires publication of a list of product defects that constitute a substantial product hazard.
- Conditions importation of a consumer product on the manufacturer's compliance with inspection and record keeping requirements.
- Requires a database on violations of consumer product safety rules to be used to determine whether a container being imported contains consumer products that are in violation of a consumer product safety standard and whether action should be taken under imported products provisions.
Rated 86% by UFCW, indicating an anti-management/pro-labor record.
Klobuchar scores 86% by UFCW on labor-management issues
The United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) is North America's Neighborhood Union--1.3 million members with UFCW locals in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and Canada. Our members work in supermarkets, drug stores, retail stores, meatpacking and meat processing plants, food processing plants, and manufacturing workers who make everything from fertilizer to shoes. We number over 60,000 strong with 25,000 workers in chemical production and 20,000 who work in garment and textile industries.
The UFCW Senate scorecard is based on these key votes:
Source: UFCW website 12-UFCW-S on May 2, 2012
- American Jobs Act (+)
- Balanced Budget Amendment (-)
- Rejecting Cut, Cap, and Balance (+)
- Repeal Health Care Law (-)
- Sen. Am. 14 Wicker Am. to S 223, excluding unionization at TSA (-)
- Sen. Am. 740 McCain Am. to HR 2112, defunding TAA (-)
- Trade Adjustment Assistance Extension Act (TAA) (+)
Deregulating banks encourages discriminatory practices.
Klobuchar voted NAY Banking Bill
Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act
- TITLE I--IMPROVING CONSUMER ACCESS TO MORTGAGE CREDIT: [for small banks,] requirements are waived if a loan is originated by and retained by the institution
- TITLE II--REGULATORY RELIEF AND PROTECTING CONSUMER ACCESS TO CREDIT: [deregulate] reciprocal deposits [if they] do not exceed 20% of its total liabilities.
- TITLE III--PROTECTIONS FOR VETERANS, CONSUMERS, AND HOMEOWNERS
- TITLE IV--TAILORING REGULATIONS FOR CERTAIN BANK HOLDING COMPANIES
- TITLE V--ENCOURAGING CAPITAL FORMATION
- TITLE VI--PROTECTIONS FOR STUDENT BORROWERS
Supporting press release from Rep. Tom Emmer (R-MN-6): This legislation will foster economic growth by providing relief to Main Street, tailor regulations for better efficacy, and most importantly it will empower individual Americans and give them more opportunity.
Opposing statement on ProPublica.org from Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-NY-5): The bill includes many provisions I support: minority-owned banks and credit unions in underserved communities have legitimate regulatory burden concerns. Unfortunately, exempting mortgage disclosures enacted to detect discriminatory practices will only assist the Trump Administration in its overall effort to curtail important civil rights regulations. I simply cannot vote for any proposal that would help this Administration chip away at laws that I and my colleagues worked so hard to enact and preserve.
Legislative outcome: Passed House 258-159-10 on May 22, 2018(Roll call 216); Passed Senate 67-31-2 on March 14, 2018(Roll call 54); Signed by President Trump. May 24, 2018
Source: Congressional vote 16-S2155 on Mar 14, 2018
Reducing tax rates balloons federal deficit & cuts programs.
Klobuchar voted NAY Tax Cuts and Jobs Act
Summary by GovTrack.US: (Nov 16, 2017)
- Reduce the corporate tax rate to 21% from 35%.
- Overseas earnings would be taxed at 15.5% as opposed to the current 35%. This may seem like an enormous reduction, but current law only taxes overseas earnings if they are returned to the US; the 15.5% rate would apply regardless.
For Individuals:Case for voting YES by Heritage Foundation (12/19/17):This is the most sweeping update to the US tax code in more than 30 years. The bill would lower taxes on businesses and individuals and unleash higher wages, more jobs, and untold opportunity through a larger and more dynamic economy. The bill includes many pro-growth features, including a deep reduction in the corporate
tax rate, a scaled-back state and local tax deduction, full expensing for five years, and lower individual tax rates.
- Lower the rate for the highest earners from 39.6% to 37%.
- Nearly double the standard deductions for individuals but repeal personal exemptions.
- The Affordable Care Act's individual mandate would be repealed.
Case for voting NO by Sierra Club (11/16/17): Republicans have passed a deeply regressive tax plan that will result in painful cuts to core domestic programs, to give billionaires and corporate polluters tax cuts while making American families pay the price. Among the worst provisions:This plan balloons the federal deficit by over $1.5 trillion. Cutting taxes for the rich now means cuts to the federal budget and entitlements later.The bill hampers the booming clean energy economy by ending tax credits for the purchase of electric vehicles and for wind and solar energy.The bill opens up the Arctic Refuge to drilling, a thinly veiled giveaway to the fossil fuel industry.
Legislative outcome: Passed House, 224-201-7, roll call #699 on 12/20; passed Senate 51-48-1, roll call #323 on 12/20; signed by Pres. Trump on 12/22.
Source: Congressional vote 17-HR1 on Nov 16, 2017
Restrict corporate use of consumer mandatory arbitration.
Klobuchar signed restricting corporate use of consumer mandatory arbitration
Excerpts from Letter from 35 Senators to the CFPB: We write to commend the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) for its proposed rule to limit the use of mandatory, pre-dispute ("forced") arbitration clauses in consumer financial product and service contracts. Every day, Americans across the country are forced to sign away their constitutional right to access the courts as a condition of purchasing common products and services like credit cards, checking accounts, and private student loans. Binding arbitration is a privatized justice system that studies show consistently produces results that favor large corporations and offers no meaningful appeals process. As a result, consumers are left without redress, and companies are unaccountable for their unscrupulous behavior.
Opposing freedom argument: (Cato Institute, "ATLA monopoly," May 2002): The trial lawyers new goal is to tighten their monopoly grip on the court system, and prevent the rest
of us from choosing a more efficient means of resolving our disputes. Arbitration is simply private court. Lawyers with a vested interest in a monopoly court system are trying to stop the arbitration business from developing. But there's nothing forced or mandatory about it. Contracts are the result of choice. People should be free to choose for themselves what contracts to make and what rights to give up.
Opposing economic argument: (Heritage Foundation, "The Unfair Attack on Arbitration," July 17, 2013): Any study by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau should examine whether a limit on arbitration would:
Source: Letter to CFPB Director 17LTR-CFPB on Aug 4, 2016
- Drive up the costs of consumer products;
- Decrease the ability of consumers or businesses to pursue claims, particularly low-value claims;
- Increase the volume of frivolous litigation filed just to obtain settlements; and
- Decrease the availability of consumer products.
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Page last updated: Dec 04, 2020