Cantor must bring STOCK Act up for vote

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  • Dale Eisman

With the announcement that a majority of the House now supports the “STOCK Act,” to stop members of Congress and their staffs from making stock trades based on inside information, Majority Leader Eric Cantor has no excuse for continued efforts to block this important reform, Common Cause said today.

“The STOCK Act was on a much-deserved path to passage until Leader Cantor apparently decided to engage in a bit of insider politics and stopped it,” said Common Cause President Bob Edgar. “He should withdraw his objection – now – and let the bill come to the floor before Congress adjourns for the year.”

Cantor, R-VA., reportedly interceded privately with House Financial Services chairman Spencer Bachus, R-AL, to head off a scheduled Dec. 14 committee markup of the bill, Politico said today. The GOP leader was said to have acted at the urging of Republicans and Democrats alike.

At mid-day, the bill’s sponsors disclosed they now have 218 co-sponsors, a majority.

Bachus announced plans to move on the legislation after a critical report on Congressional stock trading appeared on the CBS News program “60 Minutes” in mid-November. Peter Schweizer, a Hoover Institution fellow whose research figured prominently in the report, was quoted on the program accusing Bachus of “buying stock options based on apocalyptic briefings” he and other senior lawmakers received during the 2008 financial crisis on Wall Street.

“Leader Cantor claims that bipartisan opposition to the STOCK Act drove his decision to seek a postponement of the committee hearing,” Edgar said. “It’s now clear that a bipartisan majority of the House supports the bill; there’s no reason not to proceed quickly with a markup and a vote on the House floor.”

Read the coalition letter to Speaker Boehner and Majority Leader Cantor