Dem senators: Tillerson’s Exxon payout ‘egregious’

Dem senators: Tillerson’s Exxon payout ‘egregious’
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Sens. Tammy BaldwinTammy BaldwinMajor progressive group rolls out first incumbent House endorsement Dems push for more action on power grid cybersecurity Overnight Regulation: Labor groups fear rollback of Obama worker protection rule | Trump regs czar advances in Senate | New FCC enforcement chief MORE (D-Wis.) and Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenWarren goes on tweetstorm over GOP ObamaCare repeal bill Warren: Dems should campaign on single-payer healthcare plan Senate Dems step up protests ahead of ObamaCare repeal vote MORE (D-Mass.) say they are infuriated by a $180 million retirement package potentially heading to President-elect Donald TrumpDonald TrumpNew York Times staff to stage protest over job cuts Labor’s lonely decline Democrats target Trump's border wall in defense bill debate MORE’s secretary of State selection.

Former Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson reached an agreement with the oil giant’s board of directors Tuesday to severe his ties with the company ahead of his confirmation hearings next week.

The company will buy him out of the more than 2 million Exxon shares he would have earned over the next 10 years and put the money in an independent trust. He will also sell of the 611,000 shares he already owns, valued at about $55 million, according to the Chicago Tribune

“Too many Americans feel that Washington is broken and isn’t working for them,” Baldwin and Warren said in a joint statement Wednesday. "Now that the Republican establishment owns Washington, it’s clear that corporate special interests will be calling the shots and writing the rules to make a rigged system work for them."

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“President-elect Trump made a commitment to ‘drain the swamp’ in Washington by reducing the influence of special interests in government, but this egregious payout deal is nothing more than a golden parachute that flies in the face of his campaign promise.”

Baldwin and Warren added that Tillerson must prove Exxon’s compensation will not influence his possible leadership of the State Department.

“It is important to know how Rex Tillerson plans to recuse himself from matters relating to the oil industry,” they said. 

“Government officials are supposed to work on behalf of the public interest and our common good. The American people can’t afford to have our secretary of State in the pocket of corporations and special interests.”

Exxon’s arrangement with Tillerson is meant to reduce conflict-of-interest concerns facing his nomination.

The company said in a statement that Tillerson will forfeit benefits and more than $4 million in cash bonuses scheduled over the next three years.

“The net effect of the agreement is a reduction of approximately $7 million in compensation owed to Tillerson,” Exxon said in a statement Tuesday.

Tillerson’s past business dealings, particularly his work in Russia, are facing fierce scrutiny before the start of his confirmation hearing in the Senate next week.