It's not just Nancy Pelosi — plenty of government insiders are trading stocks at our expense

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Nancy Pelosi and her husband report trading tens of millions of dollars of assets a year, largely in Big Tech. CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Imag

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The Washington wheeler-dealers are making patsies out of the rest of us.

Members of Congress get million-dollar-plus expense accounts, lifetime pensions and lavish perks — but for the greedy, that’s not enough: They’re also racking up big bucks trading stocks in the very same companies Congress regulates.

Global Tech News Daily

Stock picking by members of Congress should be illegal because they have an unfair edge over the rest of us. They’re privy to the regulatory burdens or legal changes these companies are likely to face. And top leaders — like House Speaker Nancy Pelosi — actually can control what’s ahead for these companies.

That control is gold. Pelosi and her husband, venture capitalist Paul Pelosi, report trading tens of millions of dollars of assets a year, largely in Big Tech. The Nancy Pelosi Portfolio Tracker, based on these reported trades, estimates the couple is outperforming Wall Street titans like Warren Buffett. Fox Business’ Larry Kudlow marvels that the Pelosis bested the S&P 500 by nearly 15% in 2020. All the while, she’s tamping down demands to regulate Big Tech.

Global Tech News Daily

Members of Congress aren’t the only ones double dealing. Federal Reserve Vice Chair Richard Clarida stepped down Jan. 14, following the resignations of the Dallas and Boston Fed chiefs. They’re in trouble for trading stocks and mortgage-backed securities while making Fed policy affecting those markets.

A Wall Street Journal investigation found some jurists also climbing aboard the stock-picking gravy train. Sixty-one federal judges actually traded a company’s stock while the company was a litigant in their courtroom.

congress, jon ossoff, nancy pelosi, stock market, ted cruz

Federal Reserve Vice Chair Richard Clarida stepped down Jan. 14 after the Dallas and Boston Fed chiefs resigned over trading stocks and mortgage-backed securities while overseeing policy.

Bloomberg via Getty Images

Congress needs to clean up this spreading corruption, starting with its own.

Sen. Jon Ossoff (D-Ga.) is offering a bill requiring federal lawmakers and their immediate family to put their stocks in a blind trust or diversified mutual funds. Senate Republicans Josh Hawley (Mo.) and Ted Cruz (Texas) — who are as far to the right as Ossoff is to the left — say they’ll introduce similar bills.

Pelosi has the power to block them all. In March, Pelosi kept a bipartisan ban on stock trading from even getting out of the Rules Committee and onto the House floor for a vote. 

If Republicans capture the House in the midterm elections, count on the stock-trading ban to gain momentum. Encouragingly, Biden economic adviser Brian Deese supports the ban to “restore faith in our institutions,” suggesting the president might actually sign it.

Limiting stock trading will also pave the way for an urgently needed reform of Big Tech.

In October 2020, on the eve of the Trump-Biden presidential contest, Facebook and Twitter suppressed The Post’s damaging findings that Hunter Biden’s laptop implicated his father in clandestine deals with the Chinese.

Big Tech literally has the power to tilt an election by depriving the public of damning information about one candidate.

To prevent that, Sen. Bill Hagerty (R-Tenn.) has introduced the 21st Century Free Speech Act, which would regulate Big Tech platforms — treating them like railroads, telephone companies and other public utilities.

AT&T can’t bar you from using the phone because it dislikes your political speech. But Facebook, Twitter and YouTube routinely silence speakers they dislike, even the president of the United States. This proposed law would put a stop to it and restore free debate.

congress, jon ossoff, nancy pelosi, stock market, ted cruz

Sen. Bill Hagerty has introduced legislation that would regulate Big Tech platforms

AP

What’s standing in the way? Democrats are zealous to silence what they call “disinformation” — never mind that one person’s disinformation is another person’s truth. But the other barrier is Democrats’ large stock investments in Big Tech.

Nearly half of Democratic lawmakers’ stock holdings are in Big Tech, compared with a mere 14% of Republicans’ holdings. The Pelosis have reaped between $5.6 million and $30.4 million from investing in just five Big Tech firms — Facebook, Google, Amazon, Apple and Microsoft — since 2007. No wonder she’s slow-walking reforms of Big Tech.

When they say it’s not the money, you can bet it’s the money. Congress is cashing in, and freedom-loving Americans are getting screwed.

Betsy McCaughey is a former lieutenant governor of New York.

Twitter: @Betsy_McCaughey

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