Stop Stock Trading From Further Corrupting Politics

Target: Chuck Schumer, U.S. Senate Majority Leader

Goal: Support ban on individual stock trading by elected leaders.

Over 50 members of Congress have violated conflict of interest laws related to stock trading. Sometimes, the politicians will buy or sell stocks based on insider knowledge they possess because of their position. Other times, their vested interest in certain stocks may influence their votes on issues of importance to the people. For example, politicians who have strong investment in fossil fuel industry stocks are much less likely to back legislation that will hold these companies to account or that will move the needle towards competitive clean energy sources. A bipartisan effort is seeking to curb these kinds of damaging effects.

Representatives in the past have sought to put restraints on stock trading by public officials, to little effect. These attempts usually run up against politicians who want to maintain the status quo and pad their pockets at the expense of their constituents. A few such efforts are currently being kicked around in Congress. The most potentially impactful would outright prohibit any elected officials or their spouses from dealing in individual stocks while they are in office.

The nation’s leaders can mark a day celebrating political leadership by passing this act of good faith. Sign the petition below to urge long-needed movement on an initiative that will restore some needed transparency and trust in the halls of Congress.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Senator Schumer,

The higher-profile stock trading scandals of the past few years are unfortunately only representative of a much larger-scale problem in the world of politics. When constituents hear about their elected leaders enriching themselves through insider trading or basing their votes not on public gain but on private gain, they lose confidence and trust. Approval of Congress sits at historic lows, and in the absence of real efforts at reform this erosion will only continue.

You can begin the long process of rebuilding trust by finally giving the stock trading restrictions for politicians movement its due. The proposed bill that would ban elected officials and spouses from trading individual stocks is the most direct, straightforward path to achieving this aim. Please introduce this bill to the floor, with your full support, as soon as possible.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Antoni Shkraba


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