Clarke Dryden Camper is Senior Vice President, Head of Government Affairs and Public Advocacy at NYSE Euronext, a...
While GOP presidential candidates have traded sharp barbs over health care, immigration and taxes, one issue seems to unite the major contenders: getting rid of Sarbanes-Oxley, particularly Section 404, which requires substantial outside audits for public companies.
Herman Cain, now the leader in several polls, has proposed repealing Sarbanes-Oxley to spur growth and job creation. In point 10 of his 59-point economic plan, front-runner Mitt Romney calls for amending Sarbox to “relieve mid-size companies from onerous requirements.” And Rick Perry proposed rescinding Section 404 of Sarbanes-0xley as part of his just-released flat tax plan.
In 2010, Congress exempted firms with market caps below $75 million from Section 404 in an effort to reduce the regulatory burden on small businesses. The 2012 election may well decide whether that exemption is increased or otherwise amended.