During a recent episode of the Joe Rogan experience, host Joe Rogan took a hammer to Nasty Nancy Pelosi and her family’s stock trading escapades.
First, he described why members of the Pelosi family might be getting worried right now, saying, “They know laws that are going to be put into place.”
Then, after noting that Pelosi’s venture capitalist husband, Paul Pelosi, owns millions in Tesla stock and has made headlines purchasing Tesla options, Rogan asked the obvious question about those purchases:
“How is that not insider trading? If you know someone is going to sign a bill and that bill is going to be a massive boost to the electrical vehicle industry…and before that bill is signed you buy a f-ckload of stock in electrical vehicles…and the next day the stock goes up.”
He added to that with the question everyone who’s been infuriated by what the Pelosi family is up to is asking, “How is that legal?”
Watch that here:
Under the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act of 2012, an act which is generally called the STOCK Act, insider trading isn’t supposed to be legal. Obama, when he signed the law, said:
“The STOCK Act makes it clear that if members of Congress use nonpublic information to gain an unfair advantage in the market, then they are breaking the law. It creates new disclosure requirements and new measures of accountability and transparency for thousands of federal employees. That is a good and necessary thing. We were sent here to serve the American people and look out for their interests — not to look out for our own interests.”
So, lawmakers are allowed to buy and sell stocks, but aren’t allowed to use their insider knowledge when they do so.
Yet, for all intents and purposes, it basically is legal, as any penalties for violating it are small or waived. Business Insider reported, “While lawmakers who violate the STOCK Act face a fine, the penalty is usually small — $200 is the standard amount — or waived by House or Senate ethics officials.”
Pelosi’s spokesman, Drew Hammill, has responded to allegations that Pelosi acted wrongly by ignoring the part where people already know that it’s her husband doing all the trading, saying in a statement to the New York Post:
“The Speaker does not own any stocks. As you can see from the required disclosures, with which the Speaker fully cooperates, these transactions are marked ‘SP’ for Spouse. The Speaker has no prior knowledge or subsequent involvement in any transactions.”
Yes, everyone knows it was her spouse. Nonetheless, that’s still concerning; how are we to know that she’s not insider trading through her husband? Are we just to take her word for it and hope that she doesn’t want to cheat the system?
Rogan is right in that it seems like what Pelosi is up to shouldn’t be at all legal. Yet, when the foxes in the hen house are the ones making the rules, this is what you get.