The endorsement Rep. John Boehner, R-Ohio, has received from his fellow Republicans to serve as House speaker after the new Congress convenes Jan. 5 suggests retirement issues will get close scrutiny on Capitol Hill. Mr. Boehner, who was one of the key backers of the Pension Protection Act of 2006, is widely recognized as an expert on retirement issues.
He has been a longtime proponent of offering advice to plan participants. But he certainly hasn't won all of his retirement-related battles. For instance, the Obama administration killed a Boehner-backed Bush adminstration regulation that would have opened the door for money managers to offer advice to plan participants. (The Department of Labor is working on a new version of the rule that would include more safeguards and is expected to be released in final form next year.)
“Never before has there been a speaker of the House who understands so well pension and retirement policy,” said James Klein, president of the American Benefits Council, Washington.in an interview.
“The retirement industry should be happy to have a speaker who understands issues that are important to it,” added William F. Sweetnam Jr., a partner at the Groom Law Group, Washington, and the Treasury Department's benefits tax counsel during the George W. Bush administration.