Congress Delays, What Else is New
A recent NYT report found that, over the last 3 years, 183 lawmakers traded individual stocks and 93 traded stocks within the industries they sit on committees for. Additionally, Insider reported that 72 members violated the STOCK ACT, a law designed to add transparency to lawmakers' trades. These members either disclosed trades inaccurately, late, or not at all. Insider trading is fairly widespread in Congress, is anything being done?
Congress Bill to Limit Trading? Lawmakers had created a bill to ban trading by members and their families, unless it was in a blind trust. Nancy Pelosi was talking it up early in September, but house leadership had actually created their own bill instead of using other similar bills already introduced. Last week, house leadership decided to not vote on the bill and delay it until after midterms. The reason for the delay, “they didn’t have time to read the bill”. Rep. Abigail Spanberger from Virginia said, of the bill, that it was “designed to fail”. She introduced a similar bill, co-sponsored by 71 members, last year and it has yet to be brought up. “This moment marks a failure of House leadership” she stated. So far, bipartisan support for limiting Congress from trading has resulted in zero action.
Will Congress ever limit their trading? It’s possible, even with this delay many Congress members of both parties support limiting members’ stock trading and there are still a few bills introduced that limit trading. As stated, only 35% of Congress members trade stocks and supporting a ban on a corrupt practice will get members political points. It would be a huge win for transparency and something that is well overdue. But as for Congress voluntarily giving up power, I’m not holding my breath. As long as members of Congress continue to trade on non-public information, insiderviz will continue reporting it.