Let's Thwart America's Criminal Class

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"There is no distinctly native American criminal class except Congress."
-- Mark Twain

I don't often find myself in agreement with Sarah Palin, but I was thoroughly convinced by her arguments in a recent piece titled "How Congress Occupied Wall Street."

After beginning with the same hilarious quote from Mark Twain, she demanded that "laws that apply to the private sector must apply to Congress" and insisted, "Trading on non-public government information should be illegal both for those who pass on the information and those who trade on it." Ultimately, she concluded by declaring that "real reform must transcend political parties."

We couldn't agree more at The Motley Fool, and that's why we've been fighting for years on behalf of the STOCK Act, a proposed law that is designed to prohibit Senators and Representatives from trading securities based on nonpublic information. The legislation would also require additional reporting of financial information by members of Congress. Ultimately, we feel strongly that investors deserve a level playing field. Congress shouldn't enjoy an unfair advantage over the rest of us.

In the coming weeks, we intend to harness the power of our community on behalf of this legislation. Below, we've compiled some of the best information on the Web about this issue.

If you'd like to join this movement, you can do so quickly and easily.

  • First, send a blank email to letting us know that having Congressional members trading on privileged information is not OK with you. We'll keep you up to date on the progress of the STOCK Act and let you know how you can help get it passed.
  • Next, add your signature to the petition urging Congress to stop the dilly-dallying and get the STOCK Act passed now!

Coverage of the STOCK Act from The Motley Fool

Coverage from The Wall Street Journal

Additional coverage

Versions of the Stock Act:

  • Current House version in committee is H.R. 1148.
  • Publicly available Senate versions are, respectively, S. 1871 and S. 1903

Academic studies:


Public-interest websites:

You can follow John Reeves on Twitter, where he goes by @TMFBane.

Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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