Received this e-mail from U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley’s (D. OR) re-election campaign:
It’s just outrageous.
Early this year, before the public really understood the threat of the coronavirus, Members of Congress started receiving red-alert briefings about the potential pandemic.
In response, several Senators sold millions of dollars of threatened stocks—all while publicly downplaying the coronavirus threat.
Here’s my bottom line: members of Congress and their staff should be working for the American people, not abusing their public office to get rich.
Sure, we have rules against insider trading by Members of Congress. But those rules are hard to enforce and cases are even harder to prove. Let’s make this simple: Senators and Representatives should be barred entirely from owning and trading individual stocks.
Members of Congress should never be put in a position where their influence, access to information, and decision-making impacts their stock portfolio. We need a law to bar members of Congress from buying or selling stocks, or serving on corporate boards, while they’re in office.
Let’s get this done.