2021 Policy Priorities


Highlights of the Chamber’s policy priorities to help rebuild our economy, communities, and nation in 2021

2020 and the coronavirus pandemic brought uncertainty and suffering to communities, families, and businesses on an unprecedented scale. Economic disparities and the inequality of opportunity were laid bare while the country battled record unemployment as well as widespread business losses and closures. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce was in the arena fighting for relief, clarity, and protections for America’s businesses every step of the way.

The new year and the vaccine rollout bring renewed hope, and we are optimistic about the economy’s future. As always, sound public policy can support faster growth and job creation and a more broad-based economic recovery, while misguided policies will hold back our nation. That is why the Chamber’s mission to advocate and advance the interests of American businesses in Washington, across the country, and around the world to enact the right policies at every level is so critical, now more than ever.

Here are highlights of the Chamber’s key policy priorities to help rebuild our economy, communities, and nation in 2021 and beyond.

We hope you’ll join us as we rally for recovery.

 

Thomas J. Donohue  |  Former CEO

Suzanne P. Clark  |  President and CEO

Neil L. Bradley  |  Executive Vice President, Chief Policy Officer and Head of Strategic Advocacy
U.S. Chamber of Commerce

2021 FOCUS: ECONOMIC RECOVERY

 

While the topline numbers of the economic recovery are impressive and underscore of the American business community's overall resilience, beneath the headlines is an uneven, K-shaped, recovery. Some businesses and sectors have not only recovered from the pandemic's impact, they are outperforming their pre-COVID baseline. Other businesses and sectors continue to struggle. Business closures and unemployment are heavily concentrated in just a few sectors. It is critical that public policy continues to support the hard-hit sectors until the vaccine's wide-spread availability allows the economy to fully reopen.

We also know that the post-COVID economy will be different in many ways. The Chamber’s 2021 agenda includes several priorities focused on positioning the economy for the strongest possible recovery. Our agenda includes the following:

  • A robust, broad-based infrastructure package to not only support the economy today and place the U.S. on a higher growth trajectory.
  • Expansion of skilling and reskilling opportunities to help those who are out of work acquire the new jobs that are being created now and in the future.
  • Immigration reform to ensure that innovators create jobs here and to help our nation meet its workforce needs.
  • Updated rules of the road for the increasingly digital economy and the new ways millions of Americans choose to work.
  • Creation of new opportunities for American companies to sell to the 95% of consumers that live outside our borders.

It has not been frequently reported, but something remarkable has happened amid the pandemic: New business formation is booming—up nearly 50%. These new businesses will help fuel our economic recovery. Still, many of these entrepreneurs and innovators won’t see their businesses reach full potential if they face an onslaught of new government regulations. The Chamber will continue to fight on Capitol Hill, through the rulemaking process, and in the courts if necessary, to prevent regulatory overreach.

ANTITRUST AND COMPETITION POLICY

 

Create a vibrant economy by ensuring competition in a free and open market economy.

  • Advocate that antitrust laws remain relevant and capable of addressing anti-competitive concerns that arise in today’s marketplace.
  • Preserve the role of antitrust as being distinct from the role of regulation in the market.
  • Protect the “consumer welfare” standard and not allow antitrust to advance unrelated public policy goals.
  • Ensure that both the law and enforcement in non-cartel matters are governed by the “rule of reason” and grounded in sound economic analysis.
  • Support the understanding that antitrust respects legitimate property rights, including intellectual property rights.
  • Oppose efforts to create antitrust laws that would single out specific companies or industries.
  • Oppose efforts to change the law to shift the burden of proof in antitrust cases away from the government.
  • Continue to support the “substantial harm” standard used to evaluate mergers.
  • Support the need for the two antitrust agencies to remain aligned and oppose measures that empower one agency over the other.
  • Contain any efforts by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to expand the use of Section 5 beyond the traditional antitrust laws.
  • Oppose expanded FTC antitrust rulemaking authority. 
  • Avoid the politicization of antitrust enforcement by elected officials.
  • Combat interests to change antitrust laws at the state level.
International
  • Counter efforts to use antitrust as an industrial policy tool to achieve protectionist goals that circumvent commitments to trade and open markets.
  • Advance better cooperation among antitrust authorities to limit divergent approaches.
  • Promote due process in antitrust investigations.

 

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Antitrust Laws 101
Critically important but commonly misunderstood, antitrust laws are meant to promote competition and protect consumers.

The Role & Responsibility of Antitrust
There is a debate over antitrust policy and the appropriate level of enforcement. The Chamber believes strongly in market competition, over government regulation. For this reason we support antitrust enforcement when it seeks to protect or restore competition in the market in the economic interest of consumers. 

Antitrust Laws: Myths and Facts
America’s antitrust laws have ensured competition thrives, providing consumers with the benefits of lower prices, higher quality products and services, more choices, and greater innovation. However, some seek to rewrite these laws to undermine the consumer’s ability to pick winners and losers in the marketplace. Before Congress starts making unnecessary and harmful changes to existing antitrust laws, it’s important to set a few things straight.

 

Contact

Sean Heather  |  Senior Vice President
International Regulatory Affairs

Antitrust

CAPITAL MARKETS AND FINANCIAL REGULATION

 

Advance America’s global leadership in capital formation by supporting innovative fair, transparent, efficient, and diverse capital markets.

 

Make it easier for companies to go public and reform the proxy advisory industry

  • Finalize reform recommendations to help more companies grow and go public, including changes to corporate governance systems, corporate disclosure, shareholder proposal rules, secondary market trading, and more investor research for small public companies.
  • Implement reforms to the proxy advisory industry recently finalized by the SEC—an industry dominated by two firms, riddled with conflicts of interest, and a major impediment to companies going public.

Reform bank capital and liquidity rules and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)

  • Defend the risk-based pricing system by demonstrating that credit information and other risk-based indicators support a safe and inclusive financial system.
  • Support policies that allow for a well-capitalized banking system without unnecessarily constraining bank lending to consumers and businesses.
  • Work with the CFPB and Congress to ensure that the Bureau’s primary focus is to preserve consumer access and choice to financial services products.

Promote recognition of the U.S. system of insurance and obtain relief for end-users of derivatives

  • Engage with domestic and international policymakers regarding international capital and supervisory standards to avoid disruption in insurance markets and preserve the U.S. system of insurance regulation.
  • Advocate through the U.S. Chamber-led Coalition for Derivatives End-Users for legislative proposals to remove unnecessary costs on the use of derivatives by commercial end-users.

Uphold best interest rules that protect investors and preserve their choices and access

  • Uphold the SEC’s Regulation Best Interest (Reg B1) rule that enhances the standards of conduct for financial professionals advising retail investors.
  • Advocate for the alignment of the Department of Labor’s rules with Reg B1 and exemtive relief for brokers complying with Reg B1 to ensure they are not found in violation of ERISA.
  • Prevent a patchwork of conflicting state regulations.

Promote a regulatory environment that incentivizes financial services innovation

  • Clarify the regulatory and legal framework for digital assets to promote market certainty and support America’s position as a global leader. 
  • Advocate for and participate in federal and state initiatives (e.g., tech sprints, pilot programs) that establish an evidence-based approach to financial services innovation.

 

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Growth Engine: CCMC's Roadmap for Revitalizing Financial Markets
Now it is important that the financial sector fuel an economic recovery that is felt throughout the nation and benefits all Americans.

Corporate Governance: 2020 Regulatory Reforms
The Securities and Exchanges Commission (SEC) has recently finalized new rules in proxy advisory reform (Proxy Advisory Rule) and shareholder proposal reform (Shareholder Proposal Reform) that reflect the Chamber’s effectiveness in actualizing meaningful steps toward a better regulatory environment for public companies. This document provides an overview of the two final rules and the proposed rules being considered by the DOL.

 

Contacts

David Hirschmann  |  President & CEO
Center for Capital Markets Competitiveness (CCMC)

Tom Quaadman  |  Executive Vice President
Center for Capital Markets Competitiveness (CCMC)

CCMC

CYBERSECURITY

 

Support sound cybersecurity policies to protect critical infrastructure and facilitate safe and secure domestic and global commerce and trade.

  • Support legislation to codify a collaborative relationship between key critical infrastructure sectors and the intelligence community. National intelligence capabilities to protect designated critical infrastructure, who face daily threats from hostile foreign adversaries, are needed to strengthen overall national security.  
  • Promote the use of common cyber risk management frameworks and standards-based regulation domestically and internationally and strengthen public-private partnerships to protect critical infrastructure between industry and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA). 
  • Support the establishment of the Office of the National Cyber Director within the Executive Office of the President. The office will assist the American business community in navigating federal policy initiatives and the interagency processes and preparing for and responding to significant cyber events. 
  • Pass Internet of Things (IoT) legislation that reflects the industry-led core security baseline protects device makers and buyers, reduces policy fragmentation globally, and bolsters collective defense. 
  • Advance the rapid and secure deployment of 5G domestically while ensuring that national and international policy is aligned; promotes open, interoperable, and virtual radio networks; is risk-based; and fosters a vibrant technology market that rewards security and innovation.

 

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Special Report on Cybersecure Working During COVID-19
This new report from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and FICO focuses on the cybersecurity challenges of working from home during the current COVID-19 pandemic and provides recommendations that every company can use to enhance their cybersecurity.

Now+Next Series Looks at Potential for Cybersecurity Legislation This Fall and Beyond
Experts discuss the potential impacts of cybersecurity legislation.

 

Contact 

Christopher D. Roberti | Senior Vice President 
Cyber, Intelligence, and Supply Chain Security

Cyber, Intelligence and security

EDUCATION AND WORKFORCE

 

Promote access to affordable, high-quality education, career paths that lead to jobs, and workforce initiatives that create a more equitable talent marketplace and strengthen the American economy.

 

Early Education, K-12 Education, and Child Care 
  • Support the expansion of high-quality early education programs. 
  • Improve K-12 education through rigorous academics, accountability for performance, and choices for parents and families. 
  • Maintain statewide annual assessments and disaggregation of data as these are critical to understanding how students are performing in school. These important data help inform personalized support for children based on their individual needs. During this unprecedented time where most students are attending class virtually, many are challenged with access to technology. And it’s estimated that minority students may lose up to a year of learning, so measuring their actual progress could not be more important.  
  • Ensure that every student graduates from high school prepared for the next step—whether college or career. 
  • Expand the availability of high-quality childcare options.
Higher Education 
  • Support innovation in higher education while holding institutions accountable for their performance. 
  • Improve transparency to empower students, parents, and policymakers to make informed decisions. 
  • Improve financial aid programs and systems, including private sector innovations in higher education finance, which improve college access and affordability while incentivizing outcomes.
Workforce Training 
  • Ensure that training and retraining programs align with employers' needs based on accurate and timely local labor market data. 
  • Support employer-led earn and learn opportunities, including apprenticeships.  
  • Incentivize more effective and efficient partnerships between education and workforce systems. 

 

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The Importance of Childcare to U.S. Families and Businesses
The effects of COVID-19 have left many working parents with few options, and without assistance from their employers and local communities, parents will be forced to make difficult decisions and tradeoffs around their short and long-term participation in the workforce.

Talent Pipeline Management (TPM) Resource Guide for Opportunity Populations Report
The purpose of this guide is to bridge the communication divide between opportunity population-serving organizations (OPSOs) and the business community by providing each with more information on the other.

Talent Finance Initiative Digital Magazine
The future of talent development must focus on public-private partnerships and solutions for financing and investing in opportunities while managing economic risks. In 2020, we hosted five virtual events to examine how we might best finance talent development for the 21st century. These are our takeaways.

Building A More Inclusive Talent Marketplace Report
Opportunity populations face various systemic barriers. A thoughtfully assembled ecosystem that engenders a holistic sense of individuals’ skills, among other technical solutions, could provide clearer representation in the decisions around data that affect opportunity populations

 

Contact 

Cheryl Oldham  |  Vice President 
Education Policy 

Center for Education & Workforce

ENERGY

 

Foster a commonsense energy strategy to help keep America secure, prosperous, and clean.

  • Maintain and enhance America’s energy security through expanded domestic production and investments in energy technology innovation.
  • Facilitate the construction of new energy infrastructure.
  • Streamline the permitting process while ensuring safe and environmentally responsible projects.
  • Ensure a regulatory process that provides transparency, predictability, and consistency.
  • Facilitate investment in lower-emitting generation, mobile, industrial, and agricultural technologies.
  • Increase access for production of domestic natural gas, wind, oil, geothermal, and solar energy on federal lands.
  • Enact legislation to direct government research and encourage private investment in tomorrow's technologies, including energy storage, carbon capture utilization and storage, and advanced nuclear.

 

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2020 Index of U.S. Energy Security Risk
The 2020 edition of the Global Energy Institute’s (GEI) Index of U.S. Energy Security Risk incorporates the most recent historical and forecast data to assess the current and future state of U.S. energy security risk. 

International Index of Energy Security Risk
This 6th edition of the International Index of Energy Security Risk (International Index) provides an updated look at energy security risks across different countries from 1980 through 2018.

 

Contacts

Marty Durbin  |  President
Global Energy Institute

Christopher Guith  |  Senior Vice President
Global Energy Institute

Global Energy Institute

ENVIRONMENTAL AFFAIRS, CLIMATE, AND SUSTAINABILITY

 

Promote and advance collaboration between citizens, government, and business to create practical, flexible, predictable, and durable policies and solutions that improve our environment and grow our economy.

 

Climate Policy and Resilience
  • Inform and contribute to the discussion of proposed climate change policies, including market-based mechanisms, technology deployment incentives, nontraditional infrastructure, Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance (ESG), and climate reporting.
  • Advance and support technology innovations and other solutions to mitigate and adapt to climate change.
  • Support international engagement on climate policy, including through participation in the Paris Accords.
  • Facilitate climate-resilient infrastructure, including water and watershed management, flood control, and drought response, through funding and policies to support pre-disaster mitigation and planning.
  • Support private sector efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in business operations through investments and technology innovation.
Water Infrastructure and Water Policy
  • Promote increased federal, state, and local investments in water infrastructure modernization, including through innovative funding approaches and private capital mobilization.
  • Encourage investments and promote policy solutions specifically focused on the agricultural sector’s needs, small communities, and small businesses, including improved access to rural water and sanitation.
  • Increase technology innovation through a national program to collaborate and share best practices and promote exports of water technologies, products, and services.
  • Advance regulatory flexibility, alternative compliance, and innovation for stormwater management, including the importance of green infrastructure.
  • Facilitate financial and technology solutions and the private sector's role in addressing water and wastewater challenges along the U.S.-Mexico border.
  • Engage business stakeholders to ensure appropriate flexibility and risk-based, sound science in developing regulatory approaches for emerging contaminants such as PFAS.
Recycling
  • Support policies that enable flexibility and infrastructure to grow markets for recycling and recycled products, including addressing marine litter.

 

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Resilience Is Good Public Policy
During this historic and uncertain time, it is more important than ever to invest in resilient infrastructure.

From VOA - Progress Made Toward Phasing Out Planet-Warming 'Super' Greenhouse Gases
Article on rare bipartisan support for new climate legislation that brings the U.S. one step closer to ditching a group of potent planet-warming chemicals. 

 

Contacts

Marty Durbin  |  President
Global Energy Institute

Chuck Chaitovitz  |  Vice President
Environmental Affairs and Sustainability

Environmental Affairs

EQUALITY OF OPPORTUNITY

 

Develop real, sustainable solutions to help close race-based opportunity gaps in six focus areas - education, employment, entrepreneurship, criminal justice, health, and wealth.

 

On the Federal Level
  • Improve access to capital.
  • Promote investment and employment in designated opportunity zones.
  • Reform federal hiring restrictions.
  • Close the digital education divide.
On the State and Local Levels
  • Eliminate unnecessary occupational licenses.
  • Increase school choice options and access to education.
  • Reform penalties for unpaid fines and support other criminal justice reforms.
  • Advocate for fair chance hiring.
Through Best Practices / Partnerships With the Private Sector and Our Federation Members
  • Increase supply chain diversity.
  • Inspire diverse entrepreneurs and support the growth of minority-owned businesses.
  • Increase diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace and company leadership.
  • Expand talent pipeline management, workforce training, and skill acquisition to underserved communities.
  • Break down barriers to personal finance and savings.
  • Ensure access to health care for everyone.

 

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America’s Opportunity Gaps: By the Numbers
We compiled this research to show the magnitude of opportunity gaps in six key areas. The findings below will inform our work as we pursue targeted, data-driven, and sustainable solutions that will help deliver the American promise of equal opportunity to all.

National Summit on Equality of Opportunity
This event convened leaders from across the private and public sectors to discuss solutions to some of the underlying challenges driving inequality of opportunity in four critical areas: education, employment, entrepreneurship, and the criminal justice system.

Equality of Opportunity In Action: Strengthening Supplier Diversity
This conversation brought together corporations, minority-owned businesses, and policy experts to discuss and share best practices for improving supplier diversity.

 

Contact

Rick Wade  |  Senior Vice President
Strategic Alliances and Outreach

Equality of Opportunity Initiative

HEALTH CARE

 

Expand access to and improve the affordability of high-quality health care services for all Americans.

 

Access and Affordability
  • Enable greater flexibility for businesses as they offer health care coverage to their employees.
  • Support the expansion, offering, and enrollment in diverse coverage options, including Association Health Plans, Individual Coverage Health Reimbursement Arrangements, and value-based insurance products.
  • Adopt policies to stabilize the individual and small group markets.
  • Improve access to meaningful cost and quality information for consumers while protecting private companies' ability to enter into negotiated contractual arrangements.
  • Facilitate the adoption of value-based payment models and reward high-quality providers based on outcomes.
Wellness, Innovation, and Value
  • Facilitate and promote workplace wellness programs.
  • Protect consumer safety by stopping unregulated foreign drug imports and curbing the opioid epidemic.
  • Oppose price controls and efforts that reduce contractual flexibility in our health care system.
  • Oppose the expansion of new public programs such as Medicare buy-in, public option, and the ultimate adoption of a single-payer, government-run health care system.
  • Support reforms that lead to more value-based, quality-focused, and coordinated care.

 

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Protecting Americans' Coverage Together
Protecting Americans’ Coverage Together (PACT) is a campaign aimed at strengthening support for the employer-sponsored insurance (ESI) system – the backbone of our country’s health coverage.

U.S. Chamber Launches Campaign Opposing Administration’s Most Favored Nation Pricing Proposal
The campaign asks Americans to tell the White House to reject foreign price controls on drugs and keep American innovation strong.

 

Contact

Katie Mahoney  |  Vice President
Health Policy

Health Policy

IMMIGRATION

 

Implement commonsense immigration reforms to enhance America’s global competitiveness and encourage economic growth and job creation in the U.S.

  • Seek cap increases and other pro-growth reforms to employment-based visa programs that will allow employers to meet their critical workforce needs in a timely manner.
  • Protect Dreamers and Temporary Protected Status (TPS) recipients from losing their ability to live and work in the U.S.
  • Enact improvements to our nation’s border security efforts.
  • Roll back regulations and other administrative actions that have hamstrung employers' ability to hire or continue employing the legal immigrant workers they need.
  • Work with public and private stakeholders to return international travel and tourism to pre-pandemic levels and in a manner that prioritizes the health and well-being of international travelers and workers in the travel industry.

 

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U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California
U.S. Chamber successfully blocks DOL & DHS’s attempt to rewrite the H1-B, etc. visa rules without notice and comment. 

Contacts 

Glenn Spencer  |  Senior Vice President 
Employment Policy

Jon Baselice  |  Executive Director 
Immigration Policy

Immigration Policy

INFRASTRUCTURE

 

Ensure the nation’s long-term economic growth and competitiveness by enacting an infrastructure modernization plan.

 

Roads, Bridges, and Transit
  • Enact changes to ensure sufficient dedicated revenue to maintain the long-term solvency of the Highway Trust Fund.
  • Enact a long-term infrastructure modernization bill focusing on surface transportation programs and air, sea, rural broadband, energy, and water infrastructure. Provide infrastructure project sponsors a toolkit of options for supplemental funding and financing of other critical infrastructure, including through public-private partnerships, dedicated user fees, and revolving loan programs.
Permitting and Regulatory Reform
  • Build upon previous efforts to streamline the federal permitting process, including the use of concurrent reviews and time limits for agency decisions.
  • Encourage similar permitting reforms at the state and local levels.
  • Oppose efforts to reregulate transportation industries.
Infrastructure and Transportation Workforce
  • Highlight workforce shortages in the infrastructure and transportation sectors and push for regulatory reforms and skills programs to address these shortages.
  • Ensure that any new infrastructure modernization legislation provides opportunities for all segments of the population to participate in the design and construction of modern infrastructure.
  • Ensure that infrastructure modernization provides equal benefits and a better quality of life for all Americans.

 

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Testimony provided to Senate Banking Committee
The Chamber strongly supports an adequately funded, long term authorization of surface transportation programs. America needs a fluid, efficient multimodal national transportation network that will support the transportation needs of businesses from origin to destination across the globe, and from the factory to the corporate headquarters, to main street retailers to medical centers, to everywhere in between. 

Our crumbling infrastructure is failing small businesses
The U.S. Chamber puts forward four key recommendations for rebuilding America’s infrastructure.

 

Contact

Ed Mortimer  |  Vice President
Transportation Infrastructure

Let's Rebuild America

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY (IP)

 

Promote innovation and creativity globally by supporting strong IP standards that produce jobs, save lives, advance global economic and cultural prosperity, and generate breakthrough solutions to global challenges.

 

  • Support strong, consistent rules on IP by demonstrating how it provides a foundation for the solutions needed to navigate and eventually eradicate the global pandemic.
  • Localize the innovation story using the latest data to show how communities large and small depend on IP-intensive industries to stay connected, healthy and entertained.
  • Advance a global political consensus for IP standards that enable the allocation of resources to long-term, high-risk, and capital-intensive investment in innovation, creativity, and craftsmanship.
  • Deliver an industry vision for the next generation of trade agreements drawing on the U.S. Chamber’s Global Innovation Policy Center’s (GIPC’s) multisector expertise.
  • Help disrupt criminal networks that traffic in counterfeit and pirated goods by working with law enforcement, U.S. Ports of Entry, and the Office of the Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator to promote best practices.
  • Combat efforts abroad and domestically to implement price controls and other market access barriers that prevent innovators and creators from earning a fair return on investment.
  • Show how global best practices for IP—highlighted in the Chamber’s signature research product, the International IP Index—support a country’s innovative and creative potential, create high value-added jobs, and attract international investment.

 

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Discover & Deliver
Insights into the global effort to identify effective treatments and vaccines for COVID-19 from GIPC.

GIPC's International Index 2020
The International IP Index benchmarks the IP framework in 53 global markets, representing over 90% of global GDP.

Impacts of Digital Piracy on the U.S. Economy
Impacts of Digital Piracy on the U.S. Economy takes a close look at how piracy stifles the economic growth and progress generated by streaming. 

 

Contacts

David Hirschmann  |  President & CEO
Global Innovation Policy Center

Patrick Kilbride  |  Senior Vice President
Global Innovation Policy Center

Global Innovation Policy Center

INTERNATIONAL TRADE, INVESTMENT, AND REGULATORY POLICY

 

Secure market-opening trade agreements that deliver free and fair trade for American workers, farmers, and companies.

  • Support the pandemic response by lifting tariffs and other barriers to trade in medical supplies and working with international partners to eliminate export restrictions.
  • Rescind the Section 232 tariffs, which have not advanced the U.S. national security objectives at the heart of the underlying statute while undermining U.S. alliances and trade ties.
  • Press for a China policy that seeks improved access to the Chinese market, advances structural reforms in China and tariff relief through new negotiations, and works with allies globally to counter the challenges posed by China’s state capitalist policies.
  • Advocate for comprehensive, high-standard trade agreements—including with the U.K. and Kenya, in the Asia-Pacific, and by reviving the Trade in Services Agreement negotiations—as well as new digital trade agreements.
  • Secure approval of legislation renewing Trade Promotion Authority, the Generalized System of Preferences, and the Miscellaneous Tariff Bill.
  • Press for reform of laws delegating tariff authority to the Executive by requiring an affirming vote by both chambers of Congress for any new tariffs.
  • Advocate for trade and sustainability initiatives, including moves to eliminate tariffs on environmental goods and a robust outcome in the World Trade Organization (WTO) negotiations aiming to discipline fisheries subsidies and thus combat the depletion of fish stocks.
  • Support the benefits of U.S. membership in the WTO and press for reforms to make it more agile as a negotiating forum, including greater use of plurilateral approaches along with reforms to restore its Appellate Body to a fully functional state.
  • Oppose punitive measures relating to supply chains or an excessive reliance on Buy American measures that invite foreign retaliation and instead advance policies to foster resiliency through incentives, mitigate risk through geographic diversity of supply, and avoid new trade barriers.
  • Advocate for a conduct-based approach to economic sanctions that target specific, clearly articulated objectives; favor multilateral measures to ensure effectiveness and avoid backfill; and maintain Executive flexibility to respond to changing circumstances.
  • Support full funding of the federal international affairs budget to advance U.S. economic interests, national security, and humanitarian values.
  • Work to secure ratification of treaties to avoid double taxation concerning taxes on income with Chile, Hungary, and Poland.

 

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Transatlantic Trade: Time to Pull the Rusty Nails
We explain how the U.S. and EU can build stronger ties by working collaboratively on a broad agenda for transatlantic trade.

They’re Still There: Tariffs Weigh Heavily on U.S. Economy
The United States has seen important steps forward on trade over the past couple of months, but the recent wave of tariffs continues to impose a heavy burden on many American businesses. 

Two Big Wins for U.S. Trade
Completion of USMCA and the Phase 1 deal with China mean big things to American business.

 

Contacts

Myron Brilliant  |  Executive Vice President
International Affairs

John Murphy  |  Senior Vice President
International Affairs

International Affairs

LEGAL REFORM

 

Champion a fair legal system that promotes economic growth and opportunity.

  • Fight to preserve the availability of arbitration and other alternative dispute resolution mechanisms.
  • Push for the enactment of commonsense COVID-related liability solutions at both the federal and state levels.
  • Fight back against litigation drivers such as plaintiffs’ trial lawyer advertising and third-party litigation funding while supporting legislation like the Litigation Funding Transparency Act.
  • Contain the growth of nuclear verdicts and efforts by states and localities to engage in trial lawyer-driven speculative litigation.
  • Work to preserve key overenforcement reforms that rein in enforcement overreach, including programs designed to provide credit for effective compliance programs as well as limits on excessive enforcement of key statutes like the False Claims Act and the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.
  • Push back against attempts to expand class and mass action litigation including the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, securities litigation and mass torts such as asbestos litigation.
  • Expose fraud and abuse by the plaintiffs’ trial bar.
  • Fight the spread of class actions and other problematic U.S.-style litigation features abroad.

 

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Winter 2020 edition of the ILR Research Review
The Winter 2020 edition of the ILR Research Review features research that examines some of the most important litigation trends on the rise today.

Tort Liability Costs for Small Businesses
A new study from ILR and The Brattle Group shows that small businesses (those making less than $10 million in annual revenue) faced $182 billion in commercial tort costs in 2018, even though they only brought in 19% of the revenue.

ILR Briefly COVID-19 Series: State Liability Problems and Solutions
As Congress considers how to establish liability protections at the federal level, it is essential that state lawmakers take up the complementary task of creating protections tailored to meet local needs.

 

Contact

Harold Kim  |  President
U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform

Institute for Legal Reform

RETIREMENT

 

Promote policies that provide retirement security through private sector solutions.

  • Work with Congress to increase retirement savings and security by making it easier for all employers and other private entities to offer retirement plans and retirement security solutions.
  • Update employee benefit notices to provide meaningful information efficiently and effectively while protecting plan sponsors.
  • Encourage employers to offer financial wellness programs suited to their employees’ demographics and needs while limiting compliance burdens.
  • Modernize the multiemployer pension system through pension funding relief, including funding and governance reforms.

 

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Together We Are Stronger
Without single-employer funding relief, many employers that sponsor defined benefit plans will struggle between whether to make contributions to their pension plans or pay their employees. 

Congressional Inaction Costs Our Businesses and Our Jobs
By its own projections, the entire multiemployer program will go bankrupt in 2025 if Congress does not act now.

 

Contacts

Glenn Spencer  |  Senior Vice President
Employment Policy

Chantel Sheaks  |  Executive Director
Retirement Policy

Retirement Policy

SMALL BUSINESS

 

Advance a policy environment that enables small businesses to hire, grow, and flourish in America’s free enterprise system.

  • Provide the resources necessary for small businesses to survive the COVID-19 pandemic and thrive during an economic recovery.
  • Enhance the ability of small businesses to find, hire, and retain qualified and willing employees.
  • Oppose workplace mandates that disproportionately raise the cost of doing business for Main Street employers.
  • Support the Small Business Administration (SBA) Office of Advocacy’s ability to act independently for small businesses in the federal government.
  • Expand opportunities for small firms to buy and sell goods on a global market and to do so without the burdens of intellectual property abuses and restrictive tariffs.
  • Support infrastructure legislation that enables small businesses to provide timely delivery of goods and services, enhances their ability to compete for government contracts fairly, and streamlines the procurement process for small firms to work on public construction projects.

 

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U.S. Chamber of Commerce & MetLife Small Business Index
The MetLife & U.S. Chamber of Commerce Small Business Index is a quarterly survey of 1,000 small businesses to take the temperature of the sector, see where small business owners are confident, and where they are experiencing challenges.

Perspectives from Main Street: COVID-19’s Impact on Small Business 
Joseph Shamess, Co-Founder and Owner of Flags of Valor, testimony before the Committee on Small Business & Entrepreneurship United States Senate. 

Dream Big Awards 
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is proud to partner with Chase for Business® to honor the achievements of small businesses and highlights their contributions to America’s economic growth. 

   

Contact

Tom Sullivan  |  Vice President
Small Business Policy

Small Business Council

SPACE POLICY

 

Support policies that allow us to leverage Space’s vast economic potential for the U.S. and humankind.

 

Deep space exploration
  • Support critical NASA human spaceflight programs to include the Space Launch System (SLS) and the Exploration Upper Stage (EUS), Orion spacecraft, Exploration Ground Systems (EGS), and Gateway necessary for the Artemis Program to deliver crew and equipment to the lunar surface.
Low-Earth orbit presence
  • Advocate for robust funding for maintenance and operation of the International Space Station (ISS) as it marks its 20th anniversary of continuous crewed habitation and prepares for another decade of microgravity science and commercial research.  
Safety of operations
  • Promote safety, flight efficiency, and cost avoidance for space launch and commercial aviation operations in the National Airspace System (NAS) and on-orbit improvement of space situational awareness (SSA) to mitigate conjunction risks.
Commercial space opportunities
  • Encourage the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) commercial spaceport growth and reform of the International Space Station (ISS) National Lab for additional private sector microgravity research.
Regulatory streamlining
  • Ensure the implementation of the Federal Communications Commission’s satellite licensing reform, the Department of Commerce’s commercial remote sensing rulemaking, and the FAA’s regulatory streamlining of commercial space launch and reentry license requirements.

 

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NASA’s Artemis program must lead us back to the moon
Guest commentary in The Orlanda Sentinel

Escaping the Tyranny of the Rocket Equation
As NASA’s Space Launch System moves closer to reality, we all move closer to the dream of permanent outposts in space. Scientific American

 

Contact

Christian Zur  |  Executive Director
Procurement and Space Industry Council

Defense and Aerospace Council

SUPPLY CHAIN

 

Promote sound policies that reflect the economic needs of facilitating trade and the free movement of goods to increase U.S. competitiveness.

  • Advance a coherent and cohesive overarching strategy to secure America’s information and communication technology (ICT) supply chains that incentivize resilience and the efficient use of public and private sector time, resources, and money and harmonize dozens of government programs.  
  • Champion legislative solutions that modernize ports, solve e-commerce challenges, address security gaps, and improve trade facilitation. 
  • Engage with regulators to enact commonsense policies that enhance U.S. competitiveness and improve the flow and security of goods moving across our borders.

 

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How Trade, Immigration, and Global Supply Chains Will Defeat the Pandemic
Immigrants or children of immigrants played key roles in producing all three leading vaccine candidates, illustrating how immigrants have long boosted innovative industries.

 

Contact 

Christopher D. Roberti | Senior Vice President 
Cyber, Intelligence, and Supply Chain Security

Cyber, Intelligence and security

TAX

 

Promote pro-growth tax policies that preserve America's global competitiveness and increase businesses' ability to grow, invest, and create jobs.

  • Advocate for continued pro-growth tax policies in relevant tax legislation and permanency of pro-growth provisions of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (e.g., full expensing, R&D).
  • Prevent rollback of any parts of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act's pro-growth provisions and oppose anti-growth tax policy proposals.
  • Continue to work with the administration on regulatory issues.
  • Continue to work with the administration, Congress, foreign governments, and governing organizations to achieve a multilateral consensus on the digital economy's taxation.

 

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Net Operating Loss (NOL) Tax Relief Provides Much Needed Liquidity Across All Industries, Not Just Oil and Gas
The reality is that NOL relief is one of the best ways to allow employers across all industries and sectors to quickly tap tax refunds for desperately needed liquidity.

Payroll Tax Deferral: Income Impact Analysis
Congress and the Administration need to come together on a path that supports families without creating the uncertainty of a big tax surprise next year.

 

Contact

Caroline Harris  |  Vice President and Chief Tax Policy Counsel
Tax Policy & Economic Development

Economic Policy

TECHNOLOGY

 

Promote the role of technology in our economy and advocate for rational policy solutions that drive economic growth, spur innovation, and create jobs.

 

Privacy
  • Advocate for passage of national privacy legislation that protects all Americans equally, promotes innovation, and is enforced by existing federal regulators and state attorneys general.
  • Educate federal and state lawmakers about the benefits of the data-driven economy and the cost of overregulating data.
Communications Leadership
  • Support Congress, the Federal Communications Commission, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture in connecting rural Americans to broadband through smart funding, regulation, and permitting.
  • Advocate for federal legislation and regulatory action to streamline and reduce regulatory barriers to 5G, wireline, wireless, and other communications infrastructure.
  • Oppose efforts to regulate broadband like a public utility.
  • Engage members on the best use of federally allocated spectrum.
Emerging Transportation Technologies
  • Educate policymakers and the public on the benefits of emerging transportation technologies, including unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), automated vehicles (AVs), and urban air mobility (UAM).
  • Encourage the development of policies that further U.S. global leadership in these emerging transportation technologies.
  • Advocate for light-touch legislative and regulatory approaches for emerging transportation technologies and engage with agencies such as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, the Department of Transportation, and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
Artificial Intelligence (AI)
  • Advocate for a policy environment that promotes federal investments in open data and AI research and development, U.S. leadership in AI-related standards, and a favorable regulatory environment.
  • Work with public- and private-sector leaders to educate the public, the media, the business community, and policymakers on AI's benefits across industries.
  • Oppose bans and moratoriums on AI applications, such as facial recognition.
Government IT
  • Support long-term government digital transformation with increased funding and coordination with government agencies to modernize state, local, and federal information technology systems.

 

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“America's Next Tech Upgrade” Reports 
BROADBAND: Connecting All Americans 
DATA: Data for Good and the Need for a National Data Strategy 
TRANSPORTATION: Building the Foundation for the Future of Transportation 
WORKFORCE: The Future of the Workforce

 

Contacts

David Hirschmann  |  President & CEO
Chamber Technology Engagement Center (C_TEC)

Tom Quaadman  |  Executive Vice President
Center for Capital Markets Competitiveness

Jordan Crenshaw | Executive Director
Chamber Technology Engagement Center (C_TEC)

C_TEC

U.S. CHAMBER LITIGATION CENTER

 

Advocate for fair treatment of business in the courts and before regulatory agencies.

 

Challenge unlawful governmental regulation
  • Bring lawsuits against unlawful regulatory actions.
Defend free enterprise in the courts
  • File amicus curiae briefs and intervene in cases supporting free enterprise on all issues of importance to the business community in courts throughout the judicial system.
Key Issue Areas
  • Arbitration and class actions
  • Tort and novel theories of liability
  • Plaintiffs’ forum shopping
  • Excessive civil and criminal enforcement
  • Energy and environment
  • Capital markets and financial regulation
  • Labor and employment
  • Technology, innovation, and antitrust
  • Trade and immigration
  • Tax

 

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U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California
U.S. Chamber successfully blocks DOL & DHS’s attempt to rewrite the H1-B, etc. visa rules without notice and comment. 

 

Contacts

John Wood  |  Senior Vice President, Chief Legal Officer, and General Counsel
U.S. Chamber Litigation Center

U.S. Chamber Litigation Center

WORKPLACE POLICY

 

Promote workplace policies that enhance economic growth and job creation.

  • Support legislation to improve the unemployment insurance system, including shoring up state trust funds, upgrading technology, and preventing fraud.
  • Pass the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act to help workers and employers understand their obligations concerning accommodations and reduce litigation.
  • Prevent House and Senate passage of the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act, legislation that would allow for “card check” organizing instead of secret ballot elections; impose binding first contract arbitration; abolish state right to work laws; authorize “secondary boycotts” against employers with no role in a labor dispute; prevent employers from having any role in elections to decide whether their employees will be unionized; codify the National Labor Relations Board’s “quickie” election regulations; create an unworkable definition of “joint employer”; and make using independent contractors almost impossible.
  • Defeat any legislation that includes California’s definition of independent contractor status, the so-called ABC Plus test.
  • Prevent the passage of legislation that eliminates employer defenses for allegations of pay disparities or discrimination claims.
  • Support the ability of employers to utilize arbitration as a means to quickly and equitably resolve workplace disputes.
  • Ensure that any new workplace regulations or mandates in areas like minimum wage, paid leave, and joint employment are business-friendly and do not impose unworkable burdens on employers.
  • Defend the Department of Labor’s current independent contractor rule and work with Congress on a modern approach to worker classification to include portable benefits.
  • Help shape state policies and legislation on the following:
    • Independent contractor status
    • Occupational licensing
    • Paid family leave
    • Preemption
    • De Minimus time under wage and hour law

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The PRO Act Is Not So Pro-Worker
While claiming to be pro-worker, the PRO (Protecting the Right to Organize) Act – H.R. 2474 – is a grab-bag of harmful policies that would deprive millions of workers of their privacy and right to free choice while fundamentally altering America’s system of labor relations.

 

Contacts

Glenn Spencer  |  Senior Vice President
Employment Policy

Marc Freedman  |  Vice President
Workplace Policy

Employment Policy