Dem to reintroduce legislation to curb stock buybacks

Sen. Tammy BaldwinTammy Suzanne BaldwinThis week: House to vote on bill to ban LGBTQ discrimination Overnight Defense — Presented by Huntington Ingalls Industries — Pentagon approves transfer of .5B to border wall | Dems blast move | House Dem pushes Pelosi to sue over Trump's Yemen veto Pentagon approves transfer of .5B to Trump border wall from Afghan forces, other accounts MORE (D-Wis.) said that she is reintroducing her legislation to curb stock buybacks on Wednesday, as Democrats have criticized companies' share repurchases following the enactment of the GOP tax law.

Under the bill, corporations would no longer be able to repurchase their own shares on the open market.

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Additionally, the bill would require public companies to allow their workers to elect one-third of their board of directors.

"I believe that ending the corporate buyback binge and giving workers a seat at the table will ensure that workers share in the prosperity that they help to create," Baldwin said Tuesday.

Baldwin spoke about the reintroduction of her bill at an event Senate Democrats held Tuesday on stock buybacks.

Democrats have highlighted companies' stock buyback announcements after the passage of the GOP tax bill to argue that the law is helping wealthy shareholders rather than workers.

"We're learning more every day that the Republican tax-scam giveaway was based on fraudulent claims," said Sen. Chris Van HollenChristopher (Chris) Van HollenOn The Money: Judge upholds House subpoena for Trump financial records | Trump vows to appeal ruling by 'Obama-appointed judge' | Canada, Mexico lift retaliatory tariffs on US | IRS audit rate falls Mnuchin signals administration won't comply with subpoena for Trump tax returns Dem lawmakers urge FCC to scrutinize broadcast workforce diversity MORE (D-Md.).

Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerSchumer wants investigation into Chinese-designed New York subway cars Getting serious about infrastructure Schumer calls on McConnell to hold vote on Equality Act MORE (D-N.Y.), who has plans with Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersFox's Brit Hume fires back at Trump's criticism of the channel Feehery: A whole new season of 'Game of Thrones' Overnight Energy: Warren wants Dems to hold climate-focused debate | Klobuchar joins candidates rejecting fossil fuel money | 2020 contender Bennet offers climate plan MORE (I-Vt.) to offer legislation to prevent companies from buying back their own stock unless they invest in their workers, questioned how corporations could fulfill their pension obligations while also buying back their stock.

"Income distribution in America is skewed out of whack," Schumer said, adding that "we believe that not only government has a role to play, but corporate America has a role to play."

The Senate Democrats' event featured testimony from professors and workers at large companies who spoke in support of reining in stock buybacks and providing employee representation on corporate boards.

"I urge Congress to stop these malicious stock buybacks and help create jobs to benefit the community like mine," said Joe Olson, an AT&T technician and president of a local chapter of the Communications Workers of America.

Many conservatives and business groups have defended stock buybacks, arguing that they make capital investments more productive and benefit people saving for retirement. They also have said that both buybacks and business investment increased last year.