PELOSI Act: Senator Josh Hawley Introduces Bill That Bans Lawmakers from Holding and Trading Stocks

Senator Josh Hawley believes members of Congress shouldn’t dip their toes in the stock market. Also, he’s pretty good at making acronyms.

The GOP senator on Tuesday reintroduced his bill to ban lawmakers from holding or trading individual stocks, this time calling it the Preventing Elected Leaders from Owning Securities and Investments Act, or the PELOSI Act. If passed, lawmakers who violate the bill will be required to “return their profits to American taxpayers.”

Hawley previously introduced the bill in 2022, then called the Banning Insider Trading in Congress Act. His first attempt at pushing the legislation was spurred when Senator Richard Burr, who was at the time chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, was found to have sold the majority of his stocks in February 2020 reportedly after receiving a classified briefing on the emerging Covid-19 pandemic. 

This time, in case it isn’t obvious, it’s largely because of former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and her husband entrepreneur Paul Pelosi. The Pelosis have long been accused of doing insider trading.

Speaker Pelosi initially opposed attempts at legislation that banned trading, saying “we’re a free market economy. They should be able to participate in that.” But she later walked back on this statement and welcomed lawmakers to draft bills, but this has not stopped her or her husband from making ~well-timed~ trades.

In July last year, her husband reportedly bought US$1 million worth of additional stocks from American microchip maker Nvidia (NASDAQ: NVDA) a day before the Senate was scheduled to vote on the CHIPS Act.

More recently, Pelosi herself unloaded Google stocks weeks before eight states and the Department of Justice sued the tech giant for allegedly monopolizing digital ads.

The prospects for the passing of Hawley’s proposal remain unclear, none of the bills submitted before have gained enough traction to get through Congress. However, in today’s highly divisive climate, his choice of name for the bill might just actually give him the push he needs.

Separately, Hawley also recently announced that he will introduce a bill that bans the use of TikTok nationwide. The popular video-sharing app is owned by China-based ByteDance, Ltd. Hawley has called it “China’s backdoor into Americans’ lives.”

Information for this story was found via Twitter, The Hill, Newsweek, and the sources mentioned. The author has no securities or affiliations related to this organization. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

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