[Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents Volume 38, Number 31 (Monday, August 5, 2002)]
[Page 1286]
[Online from the Government Publishing Office, www.gpo.gov]

Statement on Signing the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002

July 30, 2002

    Today I have signed into law H.R. 3763, ``An Act to protect 
investors by improving the accuracy and reliability of corporate 
disclosures made pursuant to the securities laws, and for other 
purposes.'' The Act adopts tough new provisions to deter and punish 
corporate and accounting fraud and corruption, ensure justice for 
wrongdoers, and protect the interests of workers and shareholders.
    Several provisions of the Act require careful construction by the 
executive branch as it faithfully executes the Act.
    The legislative purpose of sections 302, 401, and 906 of the Act, 
relating to certification and accuracy of reports, is to strengthen the 
existing corporate reporting system under section 13(a) and 15(d) of the 
Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Accordingly, the executive branch shall 
construe this Act as not affecting the authority relating to national 
security set forth in section 13(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 
    To ensure that no infringement on the constitutional right to 
petition the Government for redress of grievances occurs in the 
enforcement of section 1512(c) of title 18 of the U.S. Code, enacted by 
section 1102 of the Act, which among other things prohibits corruptly 
influencing any official proceeding, the executive branch shall construe 
the term ``corruptly'' in section 1512(c)(2) as requiring proof of a 
criminal state of mind on the part of the defendant.
    Given that the legislative purpose of section 1514A of title 18 of 
the U.S. Code, enacted by section 806 of the Act, is to protect against 
company retaliation for lawful cooperation with investigations and not 
to define the scope of investigative authority or to grant new 
investigative authority, the executive branch shall construe section 
1514A(a)(1)(B) as referring to investigations authorized by the rules of 
the Senate or the House of Representatives and conducted for a proper 
legislative purpose.
                                                George W. Bush
 The White House,
 July 30, 2002.

Note: H.R. 3763, approved July 30, was assigned Public Law No. 107-204.