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The Senate HELP Committee will vote this week on a request from avowed socialist Senator Bernie Sanders (Socialist-Vt.) that would give him sweeping new power to investigate American companies for any reason. The Sanders request is deliberately unclear in scope and broadly worded to maximize his new power.

If approved, the request could authorize Sanders to deploy armies of government henchmen to snoop around in any company’s affairs for any reason and at any time. HELP Committee Republicans should not give Sanders any more power over the economy.

On March 1, Sanders announced a HELP Committee Executive Session. Senators will vote on two items, one being to authorize Sanders to issue a subpoena to Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz to testify in front of the HELP Committee.

While the Starbucks spectacle has garnered media attention, the vote to authorize a committee investigation into “major corporations’ labor law violations” is much broader in scope and would affect all sectors of the economy. Sanders pointedly declines to define what a major corporation is in his press release, presumably allowing him to target any company under the sun.

If the HELP Committee approves the Sanders request, Chair Sanders will use the very broad guise of “labor law violations” as a facade to harangue companies in a manner far out of step with Committee precedent. The committee, which has existed in one form or another since the mid-1800s, has never approved a subpoena to compel witness testimony. The HELP Committee has only voted twice – in 1983 and 2006 – to issue subpoenas.

If the committee grants Sanders this sweeping new authority, he will have the power to force every company in America to bend to his will.

While conservatives are rightly angry over corporate wokeness, giving Sanders such power would make the problem 100 times worse. All Sanders has to do is launch or threaten an investigation to get a company to do what he wants.

This would send a crystal-clear signal to the business community – fly the woke flag, or Sanders is coming after you with the full force of government.

Reminder: Sanders ran for president in 2016 and 2020 in the Democrat presidential primary as an avowed socialist. The Sanders campaigns gave new life to the socialist, anti-free enterprise wing of the Democrat party. Sanders just last month released a book titled “It’s OK To Be Angry About Capitalism.” This is not someone conservatives should seek to empower.

Approving this request would make Bernie Sanders the de facto Board of Directors for every major American company. HELP Republicans who vote to approve the Sanders request would be making a colossal mistake.