Maryland Sen. Ben Cardin was one of the authors of a provision in the larger Wall Street financial reform bill that makes oil, gas, and mining companies disclose payments they make to host governments where they do business.
That bill was passed in 2010, but it took two years for the SEC to write the rules to enforce the law. That was finished over the summer, but industry groups quickly filed a lawsuit over the rules. And this week, the same groups asked for a stay to prevent the law from being enforced in the meantime.
Opponents feel the rules will hurt the industry because some firms may not have to follow them, as the law only pertains to companies listed on U.S. stock exchanges.
Supporters are asking the SEC to go ahead enforcing the law, saying the industry just wants to keep the public and investors in the dark.