House to Unveil Legislation Banning Stock Trading in Congress After Exposure of Widespread Wrongdoing
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House Democrats are set to unveil legislation banning stock trading for members of Congress, their spouses, and senior staffers.
The ban would require lawmakers, spouses, and senior staff members to either put their assets in a blind trust or sell them, as reported by Punchbowl. Under the ban, lawmakers would still be able to hold mutual funds.
According to the outlet, House Democrats plan to introduce the legislation early next month, with a potential vote in September.
“We’re almost ready to move forward on this,” Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), the chair of the House Administration Committee, told Punchbowl.
“Public office is a public trust. It is my personal view that there should be regulation, or cessation, with respect to members and their spouses owning or trading stocks and other financial instruments,” Lofgren said in a statement to Business Insider.
“For the past months, I have been seeking to build consensus on this issue so we can move forward. Having considered substantial input from our hearing and reviewed a range of legislative proposals, I hope to release a legislative framework for public review in the coming weeks.”
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) publicly addressed the plan on Thursday.
The news follows Business Insider’s “Conflicted Congress” report that exposed widespread violations of the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge (STOCK) Act, the outlet noted.
The “Conflicted Congress” investigation didn’t just identify dozens of lawmakers who violated the STOCK Act. It found dozens of other lawmakers whose stock market moves are directly incompatible with their public positions.
“This includes members who craft anti-tobacco policy but invest in tobacco giants and Democrats who receive plaudits from environmental groups for crafting policy aimed at combating the climate crisis — yet invest in fossil fuel companies,” Business Insider noted.
Paul Pelosi, the husband of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), has been under public scrutiny recently. According to Insider, he’s traded millions of dollars worth of stock and options across 19 companies since 2021.
When asked if her husband has ever made any trades based on information she’s given him, Speaker Pelosi said, “Absolutely not.”