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Old that of President Obama chief ethics officer called president of the chamber Nancy Pelosi’s support for lawmakers negotiating “disgusting” and “anti-government ethics” actions.
Former Office of Government Ethics (OGE) director Walter Shaub has torched the speaker’s support for personal financial transactions among lawmakers after Pelosi defended the practice on Wednesday.
“We are a free market economy,” said Pelosi, D-Calif., Responding to a question about members of Congress and their spouses being banned from personal commerce. “They should be able to participate.”
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“What a disgusting comment,” Shaub told Fox News Digital in an email. “It is the opposite of government ethics.”
“No one kidnapped these members of Congress when they were private citizens, dragged them to Washington and forced them to be in Congress,” Shaub added. “The American people are fed up with members of Congress buying and selling stocks and creating the appearance of inside information trading.”
“They should absolutely be prohibited from trading in stocks,” Obama’s ethics chief concluded. “Let them buy diversified mutual funds. Let them buy government bonds. But forbid them to trade stocks for shouting out loud.”
Shaub also took to Pelosi on Twitter about her comments, tweeting that if the speaker sought “government ethics” and “to drain the swamp” as well as to restore “public confidence in the integrity of Congress” , she had to “close that valve.”
“Madam President, kill this participation on Wall Street!” Shaub added.
Pelosi has been criticized online by critics for her personal business moves. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, DN.Y., recently criticized congressional lawmakers who own and trade individual stocks.
“It is absolutely ridiculous that members of Congress can own and trade individual stocks while in office,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted Last week. “The access and influence we have must be exercised for the public interest, not for our benefit. It should not be legal for us to trade individual stocks with the information we have.”
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Pelosi’s Deputy Chief of Staff Drew Hammill defended his boss Wednesday, telling Business Insider US the “STOCK Act exists to shed light on the transactions of members of Congress” and that “sunlight is best disinfectant”.
“As you can see from the required disclosures, with which the speaker fully cooperates, these transactions are marked ‘SP’ for the spouse,” Hammill said recently. “The speaker has no prior knowledge or subsequent involvement in any transaction.”