Democrats to introduce ‘ban’ on lawmakers trading stock as Nancy Pelosi faces insider trading speculation

Democrats say they will introduce legislation to ban lawmakers from trading stocks once and for all as their party leader, Nancy Pelosi (D-Ca.), continues to face accusations of insider trading.

But some insiders in Washington are skeptical of the “performative” move, the New York Post reported.

Dems preparing stock ban bill

The “ban” wouldn’t actually ban stock trading outright, but it would require lawmakers, their spouses, and senior staff to either place their assets in blind trusts or sell, the Daily Mail reported. Lawmakers could still invest in mutual funds under the bill, which Dems plan to move in August.

Insider trading by members of Congress is technically illegal but making lawmakers follow the law hasn’t been easy. Speaker Pelosi has often pointed to the fact that she doesn’t own any stocks herself to dodge scrutiny. Her husband’s investments have nevertheless raised suspicions for years.

Paul Pelosi raised eyebrows recently when he purchased millions in stock in the chipmaker Nvidia as Congress prepared to vote on a huge subsidy for American semiconductor companies.

As the trade came under scrutiny, Pelosi abruptly dumped the shares at a loss.

“Mr. Pelosi decided to sell the shares at a loss rather than allow the misinformation in the press regarding this trade to continue,” Speaker Pelosi’s office said.

All for show?

Nancy Pelosi is one of the wealthiest members of Congress. She and her venture capitalist husband have made millions from Paul Pelosi’s investments, according to Insider.

Pelosi has said she opposes a ban on trading stock because lawmakers have a right to participate in “the free market.” When pressed on whether she has ever given stock tips to her husband last week, she abruptly walked away, saying, “No. Absolutely not.”

While Democrats have been quick to tout their proposed “ban,” a healthy dose of cynicism is probably warranted. Stopping insider trading in Congress is an issue that lawmakers have talked about for years without tangible results.

Despite the recent focus on Pelosi’s trades in the media, there is no will in Congress for lawmakers to regulate themselves, Washington insiders told the New York Post.

“It’s all performative … it’s not going anywhere,” one Senate staffer told The Post.

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