Pelosi Defends Stock Investment By Members Of Congress: ‘We’re A Free Market Economy’


At a weekly press conference, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) defended stock market investment by members of Congress after an investigation by Insider alleged that 49 members of Congress have violated laws against insider trading.

U. S. law forbids people with insider information, including members of Congress, from buying stocks on the basis of that information, and those who break these laws can be subject to criminal prosecution.

Laws against congressional insider trading were strengthened in 2012 amid a wave of insider trading in Congress; the STOCK Act, or Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act of 2012, placed limitations and new reporting guidelines on federal lawmakers.

Most critically, the law began requiring members of congress to disclose trades made by themselves, their spouse, or their dependent children publicly and quickly.

Insider’s report found that a large, bipartisan swath of 49 members in both chambers had violated these laws. These include, among many others, big names like Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.), and House Reps. Debbie Wasserman (D-Fla.) and Dan Crenshaw (R-Texas).

In light of this report, Pelosi was asked by a reporter whether Congress members should be barred from stock trades.

“No,” Pelosi said quickly. “We have a responsibility to report [our trades] … [and] if people aren’t reporting, they should be.”

Pressed to explain her “no,” Pelosi argued, “Because we’re a free market economy. [Members of Congress] should be able to participate in that.”

While Speaker Pelosi’s name did not appear in the report, Pelosi and her husband have made millions from stock trading since she has been in office. In fact, the Pelosis have been so successful in their stock trades that small-time investors on the social media platform TikTok began a trend of following the Pelosis’ financial releases and copying their trades to make money.

But others see the Pelosis’ trades as more problematic in view of Speaker Pelosi’s significant power and access to nonpublic information that could affect the stock market.

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For instance, in July, just as the House was trying to advance antitrust legislation targeted at tech monopolies, Paul Pelosi made a bullish bet in favor of Google parent company Alphabet, while others were pulling out over concerns about the House’s pending legislation. This ultimately paid off for Pelosi, netting him $5 million.

The antitrust bill received bipartisan support, and despite being marked up, voted on, and passed through the House Judiciary Committee, action on the bill suddenly stalled, and it has sat in congressional limbo since June.

Nancy Pelosi’s spokesperson quickly denie… (Read more)

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