Citizen-led initiatives scored big wins in the midterms. But now this form of direct democracy is under attack.
Overpaid CEOs have a very good friend in the giant mutual fund BlackRock. The world’s largest money manager owns stock in thousands of firms across the country, and when it comes time for shareholders to have their annual say on these firms’ executive pay proposals, BlackRock almost never votes “no.”
This kind of rubberstamping of excessive pay plans helps explain why the gap between CEO and worker pay remains at the staggering level of 335-to-1.
And yet this practice appears to be just hunky dory with the vast majority of BlackRock shareholders. At the Wall Street firm’s annual meeting in Manhattan on May 25, only 4 percent voted in favor of a proposal to put more muscle into the firm’s approach to CEO pay voting.