Corporations receiving federal aid to help prop them up amid the economic turmoil sparked by the coronavirus pandemic would be banned from lobbying until the funds are repaid to the government under a House Democratic proposal.
Legislation introduced by House Democrats would set strict conditions on companies that receive any government assistance, including a ban on lobbying, stock buybacks or executive bonuses.
House Democrats introduced the legislation on Monday in an effort to pressure Senate Republicans to adopt more of their proposals in the next economic stimulus package under negotiation.
Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerFixing Congress requires fixing how it legislates Beware the tea party of the left Bottom line MORE (D-N.Y.) and Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven MnuchinMajor Russian hacking group linked to ransomware attack on Sinclair: report The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Alibaba - Biden jumps into frenzied Dem spending talks Former Treasury secretaries tried to resolve debt limit impasse in talks with McConnell, Yellen: report MORE said late Monday night that they are close to a deal after days of intense and frequently testy negotiations over relief for the airline industry, enhancing unemployment benefits and ensuring additional money for hospitals.
An agreement could be unveiled as soon as Tuesday.
If a bipartisan compromise is reached that has buy-in from Senate Democrats and Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiOvernight Defense & National Security — Presented by Raytheon Technologies — Navy probe reveals disastrous ship fire response GOP rep leaves committee assignments after indictment Under pressure, Democrats cut back spending MORE (D-Calif.), the bill introduced by House Democrats may not necessarily get a vote.
The House Democrats' bill would also require companies receiving federal aid to maintain workforce levels and worker pay, as well as offer at least 14 days of paid leave throughout the coronavirus pandemic.
In the bipartisan negotiations, Republicans want to limit executive compensation based on 2019 earnings, while Democrats are pushing for a limit based on median worker salaries.
The original legislation unveiled by Senate Republicans last week would cap executives' pay at companies receiving federal assistance. No executive who makes more than $425,000 annually would be eligible for a raise for two years.