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Why the public wants Congress to stop trading stocks
02:25 - Source: CNN
CNN  — 

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer told CNN the House will “probably not” vote in the coming days on legislation that would ban senior government officials and their families from trading stocks, meaning the House will likely not take the bill up before the midterms.

“Probably no vote this week,” the Maryland Democrat told CNN.

This comes after lawmakers, including Hoyer, were opposed to the legislation when the framework was unveiled last week, sources told CNN at the time. Text of the bill came out Tuesday night and will not get a vote before lawmakers leave for recess in October to campaign ahead of the 2022 midterms.

“I haven’t read it, it’s a complicated issue, as you can imagine, as a new rule for members they have to follow, and their families as I understand, so I think it deserves careful study to make sure if we do something, we do it right,” Hoyer said.

The framework, written by House Administration Committee chairwoman, Democratic Rep. Zoe Lofgren of California, at the direction of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, would restrict senior government officials, including lawmakers and Supreme Court justices, as well as their spouses and dependent children, from trading stocks.

The legislation also proposes strengthening disclosure requirements by senior government officials. The proposal would also increase fines to a $1,000 fee for every 30-day period that a person is in violation of the rules, as well as enforce ethics offices to disclose information about when government officials comply with the rules.

This development of the legislation was notable because Pelosi has long defended lawmakers’ ability to trade stocks but, in the last month, committed to putting legislation that would ban stock trading on the floor.

The ability of lawmakers to trade stocks has been the subject of increasing scrutiny over the years. Several lawmakers were scrutinized for their financial transactions during the early days of the coronavirus pandemic, when members of Congress received closed-door briefings that warned of an impending financial crash.