AOC and Pelosi in open spat about Congress members trading in stocks
Finally, I have an issue on which I can agree with Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. The young solon from New York City is still jaded enough to call out the obvious conflicts of interest when members of Congress trade stocks over whose fates they may have inside information. She is directly confronting her party’s leader on the House, someone whose own daughter has warned of her ability to exact revenge (”she’ll cut your head off”).
Speaker Pelosi, for her part, has seen her husband accumulate a large fortune while she engaged in what is laughably called “public service.” And not just in the distant past:
On Wednesday [July 7, 2021] evening, Bloomberg News published a report titled “Pelosi’s Husband Locked In $5.3 Million From Alphabet Options,” which carried the subheadlines, “Action was week before House panel considered antitrust bills,” and “Antitrust bills target Alphabet’s Google, Apple, Amazon.” (snip)
The trades in question involve 40 call options on Alphabet’s stock at a strike price of $1,200, which were exercised on June 18, a few days before the House subcommittee convened. The contracts gave Pelosi the right to convert his 40 call options into 4,000 Alphabet shares at a price of $1,200. Because Alphabet was trading at about $2,550 when the options were exercised and converted into stock, they were in the money and are now worth about $5.4 million.
The Pelosis are far from the only Congressional families making big money trading stocks while voting on legislation that could affect their value and while gaining inside information. In 2021:
Politicians and their immediate families bought $267 million and sold $364 million worth of assets this year
There is no reason members of Congress should hold and trade individual stock when we write major policy and have access to sensitive information.— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) December 18, 2021
There are many ways members can invest w/o creating actual or appeared conflict of interest,like thrift savings plans or index funds https://t.co/VK4Pgx8AgI
This has got to infuriate Pelosi. Yet, what can she do about it? She needs the radicals like Cortez and her Squad mates.
I wish AOC well in this fight and hope she denounces the corruption magnet that big government constitutes for those who wield its power.
Maybe there is hope for her?
Caricature by Donkey Hotey CC BY 2.0 license
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