Congress Quietly Repeals Their Ban On Insider Trading

congress

The Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act, or STOCK Act, was a law passed last year designed to prevent insider trading among lawmakers and government officials by requiring them to post disclosures of their financial transactions online.

I use the past tense, because the current Congress has very quietly killed it:

Both parties and both houses of Congress hated the disclosure portion of the law so much that it was repealed last Friday (4/12/13) without debate—the measure was sent to the President by unanimous consent. The ordeal took about 10 seconds in the Senate and 14 seconds in the House, according to official records. …

Upon the signing of the bill into law last year (pictured above), President Barack Obama said, “The idea that everybody plays by the same rules is one of our most cherished American values. It’s the notion that the powerful shouldn’t get to create one set of rules for themselves and another set of rules for everybody else, and if we expect that to apply to our biggest corporations and to our most successful citizens, it certainly should apply to our elected officials—especially at a time when there is a deficit of trust between this city and the rest of the country.” The White House has not said whether the President will sign the repeal.

Despite the repeal, government officials will still have to file disclosures of securities trades over $1,000 within 45 days, but they no longer have to file them in a searchable database that was to be easily accessible to the public.

No word yet on whether or not President Obama will sign the repeal, but what a shameful maneuver. And a strongly bi-partisan one at that.

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com. In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters. He writes a weekly column for several North Dakota newspapers, and also serves as a policy fellow for the North Dakota Policy Council.

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