(DailyDig.com) – Missouri Senator Josh Hawley has renewed a proposal to impose severe investing rules on members of Congress, who are often lambasted for their seemingly faultless stock trades.
He didn’t mention House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, but his ingeniously phrased idea, the “Preventing Elected Leaders from Owning Securities and Investments (PELOSI) Act,” was clearly influenced by her.
The Pelosis were said to have performed remarkably well in the stock market as the subject gained popularity last year. In fact, since 2008, the Pelosis have increased their net worth by an astounding $140 million, thanks in large part to Mr. Pelosi’s astounding ability to accumulate sound investments in businesses that Nancy Pelosi has helped finance.
One would assume that this law would be simple to pass given all of the public statements made by Congress pledging their support. Unfortunately, such a bill has not even been put to a floor vote.
On January 24, Hawley tweeted about the new law:
Hawley also said, “As members of Congress, both Senators and Representatives are tasked with providing oversight of the same companies they invest in, yet they continually buy and sell stocks, outperforming the market time and again.”
Hawley’s proposal sets simple criteria for congressional investments.
In addition to prohibiting members from retaining, purchasing, or selling stocks or comparable financial interests during their term in political office, Hawley’s plan would give them six months to dispose of any banned assets or place them in a blind trust for the balance of their term.
He outlined many severe measures that might be used against members who violate the regulations, including penalties and the inability to deduct investment losses on their income tax returns. It would also oblige lawmakers to repay any earnings to American taxpayers.
In light of the fact that Congress is frequently privy to inside knowledge on businesses that they have the authority to regulate, it is imperative that the issue be brought to light. If Congress and the Senate really want to do something to win back the trust of the American people, they should work together to pass this bill.
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