Pelosi says whether Congress members should trade stock
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said during a Wednesday press conference that members of Congress and their spouses should be able to trade in stock while in office because it’s a “free market.”
The House speaker was asked about a recent Business Insider report revealing that numerous lawmakers have been late in filing their financial disclosures. The report was based on a five-month review.
Listen to how quickly Pelosi said “No” to the question of wether Members of Congress and their spouses should be banned from owning stock.Pelosi’s salary is $223,500Her net worth is about $100 million. You do the math. pic.twitter.com/ZpP6vNuQYf— Benny (@bennyjohnson) December 15, 2021
“We have a responsibility to report on the stock, but I’m not familiar with that five-month review. But if people aren’t reporting, they should be,” she said.
She went on to defend the trading itself, since the US is “a free market economy” and those holding office should “be able to participate in that.”
Pelosi's husband, Paul Pelosi, frequently trades stocks, and the wealth the couple has amassed has seen critics call for a ban on lawmakers participating in these activities while in office.
Last year, Pelosi and her husband, both 81, made approximately 45% return on their stocks and 66% return on their option trading, according to some estimates. Financial disclosure documents show investments have been marked under ‘spouse’ for Pelosi – and her spokesperson claims the House speaker “does not own stocks” personally.
Critics, both liberal and conservative, were quick to point out Pelosi’s own benefit from stock trading, with some even accusing her of knowingly defending a “wildly corrupt system” for personal benefit.
“It's not a free and transparent market when lawmakers can trade on inside, non-public information that can move stock prices,” journalist and ‘Don’t Look Up’ co-writer David Sirota tweeted in reaction.
It's not a free and transparent market when lawmakers can trade on inside, non-public information that can move stock prices. Pelosi is smart enough to know this, which means she's knowingly defending a wildly corrupt system. https://t.co/OU0PBNFAcL— David Sirota (@davidsirota) December 15, 2021
“Sometimes I struggle to believe Pelosi is a real person and not just a fictional villain from a movie,” Grabien founder Tom Elliott said.