An anti-terrorism idea that State Treasurer Sarah Steelman (R-MO) started in Missouri is spreading throughout the country, and Steelman is doing her part to spread the word. It’s an effort to cut off the billions of dollars currently invested in companies that are doing business with countries engaged in terrorist activities.
Steelman’s movement, which began in Missouri, has taken her to Capitol Hill in Washington where she has testified before a U.S. House committee. And, it’s taking root in a number of states, including California, where the State Assembly recently voted to bar that state employees’ retirement system and its state teacher retirement system from investing in companies involved with Iran. Steelman isn’t surprised with the growing support for the idea.
The U.S. State Department bars investment in terrorism-sponsoring countries like Iran, Sudan, Syria, and North Korea – but Americans are still investing billions of dollars through international companies that are doing business with those countries. A lot of that money is in public pension funds, which prompted Steelman to create the first terrorism screening and divestment policy.