Ban members of Congress from buying and selling individual stocks
The petition to Congress reads:
"Pass legislation to ban members of Congress from buying and selling individual stocks."
As news of the COVID-19 pandemic and its inevitable consequences began to circulate early in 2020, millions of Americans watched the value of their stocks and retirement accounts erode.
Yet what was a crisis for some turned out to be an opportunity for lawmakers like former Georgia Sen. David Perdue. In January of 2020, the senator sold up to $5 million of Cardlytics stock at $86 a share. Two months later, after the stock had crashed, he dove back in, repurchasing thousands of shares at $30 each.
Now, some members of Congress – including Perdue's successor, Senator Jon Ossoff – are trying to pass legislation that would make it illegal for lawmakers to actively trade stocks altogether. It’s a smart policy that’s long overdue.
Sign the petition urging Congress to ban lawmakers from trading stocks. Add your name to the petition now.
Stock trades by members of Congress – particularly those like Sen. Purdue’s – raise suspicions of insider trading and impropriety. The STOCK Act of 2012 tries to address this by prohibiting politicians from using nonpublic information to personally benefit in the stock market. However, it stops short of banning them from making trades altogether. So while the rest of us are navigating our finances without a map, unscrupulous politicians still have the opportunity to profit in the market from insider knowledge only they have access to.
Sen. Ossoff's bill, the Ban Congressional Stock Trading Act, would require legislators, their spouses, and dependent children to place their stock portfolios into blind trusts. If passed, the legislation would not allow lawmakers to use insider information to trade stocks and make money.
The fight to ban members of Congress from trading stocks picked up serious momentum last year, but the bill was never brought to the floor of the House or Senate for a vote. Now it’s time to build grassroots support to put it over the finish line.