As Broc Romanek noted yesterday, President Donald Trump has nominated Columbia Law School Professor Robert J. Jackson, Jr. to become a member of the Securities and Exchange Commission. Over the years, Professor Jackson’s name has made several appearances in this blog, including:
In 2013, Professor Jackson and Professor Lucian Bebchuk co-wrote an article advocating that the SEC adopt rules requiring companies to disclose their political spending. Notably (at least from my perspective), the Professors argued against some the points raised in my comment letter to the SEC:
Finally, opponents of the Petition maintain that public companies will incur substantial reporting expenditures if they are required to disclose political spending to investors. These expenses might include, for example, the internal controls and legal expenses associated with preparing such disclosures. Keith Paul Bishop, the former California Commissioner of Corporations, advanced this argument in comments to the SEC opposing the Petition, and the Chamber of Commerce has argued that disclosure rules in this area would “impose substantial costs on public companies” that would outweigh any benefits of disclosure.
Shining Light on Corporate Political Spending, 101 Geo. L.J. 923, 964 (2013) (footnote omitted). I remain unconvinced and I hope that, if confirmed, Professor Jackson will be successful in persuading his fellow Commissioners.
A few years back, I stopped by Professor Jackson’s office at Columbia University and had a nice discussion. Although our views differ, I think Professor Jackson would be a thoughtful and well qualified addition to the SEC.