The Republican-controlled U.S. House of Representatives voted along party lines, 234-183, Thursday to repeal a new Department of Labor rule the Obama administration introduced in April that would redefine the definition of “retirement advice” for pension and retirement plans.
Democrats said the fiduciary rule would protect families from paying higher fee, meanwhile Republicans warn the rule will impose new standards and regulations on financial advisors while also expanding the definition of who is required to comply. Studies have found the increased compliance costs could be over $2 billion. The added costs will be passed on to the consumer in the form of higher costs and fees.
Republican Congressman Bradley Byrne (AL-01), a member of the House Education and the Workforce Committee, joined his Party and voted for H.J. Res. 88 to block the rule warning the it would be especially hard on low- and middle-income families who will no longer be able to afford retirement advice, and that it may also restrict small businesses’ ability to offer retirement options to their employees.
“I am pleased the House acted today to stop the Obama Administration’s ill-conceived ‘fiduciary’ rule,” said Byrne in a statement after his vote. “Republicans and Democrats agree that financial advisors should act in the best interest of the consumer, but there is a far better way to ensure the bad actors are punished than hurting everyone else in the process.”
Byrne continued, “No one would be hurt more by this rule than low- and middle-income families who arguably need this financial advice the most. I hope the Senate will act soon on our legislation to ensure each and every American has access to retirement advice.”
Byrne was joined by his Alabama Republican colleagues, Reps. Martha Roby (AL-02), Mike Rogers (AL-03), Robert Aderholt (AL-04), Mo Brooks (AL-06) and Gary Palmer (AL-06) in voting to block the rule. Rep. Terri Sewell, the delegation’s lone Democrat, voted against the resolution that blocks the new.
Following the vote, President Barack Obama has threatened to veto the measure.