Democratic Lawmakers Caught In Stock Manipulation Transactions

Did you ever wonder how someone like Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi can amass an estimated fortune of roughly $120 million dollars, on an annual salary as Speaker of approximately $225,000?

This is the average annual salary of Americans in the upper-middle class. But few people can imagine making such a fortune on the basis of their income.

The 80 something-year-old lawmaker, along with her mogul real estate husband has been manipulating financial transactions for decades. Pelosi, through her Speakership, has managed to keep a few steps ahead of being convicted for a number of serious ethical violations.

This is what Martha Stewart, America’s homemaker, was convicted for in 2004. She spent nearly six months in federal prison for “insider trade.”

Speaker Pelosi has a sordid history of using her influence in delaying pending legislation that has direct financial implications on company’s bottom line and then giving her husband Paul a heads-up on that pending legislation. He has the opportunity to buy low-priced stock options or to purchase government properties at a lower price than what is being advertised.

The Speaker delayed a bill that would have ended Visa’s lucrative swipe fees for Visa and other credit providers, and the Speaker made it possible for the Pelosi family to clear $5 million.

In gratitude to Pelosi’s delay in passing the bill, the company offered her husband a VIP slice of the IPO. The initial offer was $44 per share. Paul Pelosi took advantage of the offer and bought 5,000 shares. The shares rose to $64 per unit within days.

Pelosi purchased 15,000 additional shares later, bringing his total investment to $5 million. Pelosi’s influence was instrumental in preventing Visa legislation from being enacted as it began in 2007.

However, a government watchdog group is once again looking into stock deals of Democratic lawmakers filing “late disclosure” of stock transactions.

This latest case involves Katherine Clark, D.Mass. Assistant Speaker of House, Pelosi’s protege, who allegedly “forgot” to disclose $285,000 in financial stock transactions and violated the STOCK Act.

According to the ethics complaint, Clark was accused of failing to disclose 19 stock transactions made by her husband within 45-days. These transactions include investments in Google’s parent firm Alphabet Inc.; Best Buy; First Solar; and investment firm BlackRock.

Stock purchases include shares in GlaxoSmithKline, Iron Mountain Data Management Company, and Xylem Inc. Water technology company Xylem Inc. These transactions, which were valued at $19,019 to $285,000, were completed on June 4, but they were not disclosed until August 15.

The bipartisan government watchdog group suggests that the COVID-19 epidemic may have allowed Clark and other legislators to cheat the system. In order to buy a variety of stocks related to health, they allegedly used sensitive information about government health that was not available to the public.

Clark was not the only legislator to be subject to ethics complaints about violating the STOCK Act. Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, former Chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, is also being investigated.

Schultz is accused of buying $15,000 in stock in Westell Technologies, a telecommunications firm, while her legally “dependent child” purchased another $45.00 in stock from the same company. Schultz didn’t report the transactions until nine months after the deadline, which was well beyond the requirements.

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