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Pelosi Rejects Stock-Trading Ban for Lawmakers as Her Family Makes Millions on the Market



House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) rejected the notion of banning active members of Congress and their spouses from holding and trading stocks. Her comments come amid calls from some progressives for the practice to be banned for elected officials.

“This is a free market, and people — we are a free market economy. They should be able to participate in that,” Pelosi said at her weekly press conference.

Pelosi’s position is nearly the direct opposite of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), who tweeted last week that it’s “absolutely ludicrous” that sitting members of Congress can trade individual stocks.

“The access and influence we have should be exercised for the public interest, not our profit. It shouldn’t be legal for us to trade individual stock with the info we have,” Ocasio-Cortez wrote.

Earlier this year, Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR) introduced legislation to ban sitting congressional members and their aides from trading stocks, most bonds, and options contracts. The bill garnered bipartisan support.

Why it matters

Pelosi’s opinion doesn’t appear to be unbiased. Bloomberg reported that her husband Paul made $5 million after acquiring 4,000 shares of Google’s parent company, Alphabet.


A spokesperson for Pelosi told Bloomberg she doesn’t own any stock and had no involvement with her husband’s trading activity.

So far, Pelosi has disclosed 48 transactions made by her family worth more than $50 million. The top Democrat is one of the 25 wealthiest congressional members.

Last year, several lawmakers received backlash for stock trades they made early in the pandemic.

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is investigating Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) and his brother over Burr selling $1.65 million in stock on February 13, 2020 — after lawmakers received intel on the emerging global health crisis.


Pelosi Opposes Ban on Lawmakers Trading Stocks as Her Family Makes Millions on the Market