OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
Paul Pelosi is getting hit with a double dose of bad news.
Paul, the husband of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, was sentenced to five days in jail after being convicted of misdemeanor driving under the influence. He was arrested in late May and charged with driving under the influence and causing injury. He had a blood alcohol level above 0.08 percent.
Now, there is increased attention on banning members of Congress and their spouses from trading in individual stocks while in office.
GOP House Leader Kevin McCarthy, who will likely become the next Speaker if Republicans win back in the House in November, said there will be an investigation into the Pelosis stock trading.
McCarthy expressed concern over Paul Pelosi having tremendous success in picking the correct stocks to purchase and sell and recently purchased large shares of NVIDIA prior to the House and Senate passing legislation that benefited the company.
“I would look all the way through it,” he said of the Democrat proposal to ban stock trading for spouses of Congress members. “What I’ve told everybody is we will come back, and we will not only investigate this, we will come back with a proposal to change the current behavior.”
And the legislation is not going to be debated or voted on until Congress comes back from its August recess.
“Her husband can trade all the way through, but now it becomes a crisis?” he said. “I think what her husband did was wrong.”
“I think we need to bring trust back to this institution,” he said. “I think we have to do a thorough investigation and look at what is the proper role for members of Congress and what influence they have, and I don’t think the proper way to do this is Nancy Pelosi writing the bill because we have proven that she can’t do that.”
Democrats plan to introduce legislation next month that would prevent stock trades by members of Congress and their spouses.
The Daily Mail reported:
The framework would force members of Congress, their spouses, and senior staff to place assets in either a qualified blind trust or completely sell them off. Lawmakers, spouses, and staff would still be able to hold mutual funds.
Leadership’s goal is to get the legislation through the House in September, according to Punchbowl News.
Last week congressional stock purchases were again under fire after Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s husband Paul purchased over $1 million in shares of semiconductor firm Nvidia as Congress was negotiating the bill to inject billions into the semiconductor chip industry. The Senate passed that bill Wednesday and the House is expected to pass it on Thursday.
“This issue of whether and how Members of Congress engage in various financial transactions deserves scrutiny by the Committee,” Sen. Josh Hawley said in a letter to Sen. Gary Peters, chair of the Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee.
“In 2020 Speaker Pelosi and her husband outperformed the S&P 500 by a whopping 14.3 percent,” he said. A report showed that 90 percent of investment funds that are actively managed do not do that.
The issue has gotten so bad that left-wing MSNBC contributor Richard Painter published an op-ed titled, “Biden’s ongoing struggle with the utter hypocrisy of stock trading in Congress.”
Painter argued that “Americans are fed up with corruption and the appearance of corruption in Congress.”
“It’s important that Congress pass a law prohibiting its members and their spouses from trading in individual stocks while in office. For years, such reform has faced considerable resistance from members of both political parties, including the speaker, but it is necessary if public confidence in Congress is to be restored. Democrats have been discussing a plan to introduce such legislation this month,” he wrote.
“Americans are fed up with corruption and the appearance of corruption in Congress. Congress should pass a ban on trading in individual stocks by members and their spouses. Members who want to play the market instead of representing the public are always free to resign or not run for re-election. If they won’t, voters should make the choice for them in November,” he added.