Senators and other lawmakers often get to hear classified information that could affect stock prices. Some elected officials have chosen to take advantage of this information. Congressman Chris Collins, formerly of New York’s 27th district, was recently sentenced to 26 months in prison for insider trading.
This week, Senators Richard Burr (NC) and Kelly Loeffler (GA) were accused of selling off stocks after hearing information about the COVID-19 pandemic. Now another senator, Cory Booker of New Jersey, has said that lawmakers shouldn’t be able to own personal stock.
The New Jersey senator remarked, “There’s just too much insider information down here. No senator should own individual stocks. I am fully against that. If you want to be somebody who’s playing in the stock market, don’t run for the United States Senate. Don’t run for Congress.”
The former presidential candidate continued, “I think we should be limited to indexed funds and more. We need to start returning our institutions to really be beyond the appearance even of impropriety. It weakens our democracy, it undermines trust in our institutions and we should just ban a lot of these practices.”
Booker also said that he was happy to hear that Trump wanted to prevent corporate federal aid recipients from buying back stock. “It’s nice to hear this coming from the President of the United States who really ushered in through his policies one of the largest periods of stock buybacks that I’ve seen in my adult life,” he said. “This kind of short-termism stock manipulation is not something we want to be feeding right now. What we want to be doing is try to create an overall healthy economy that’s going to help the average American.”