Things were looking up for Minnesota Democrat Tim Walz and his bill banning congressional insider trading – until U.S. House Republican Leader Eric Cantor of Virginia ended the party by forcing the cancellation of a vote planned for next week.
Walz and his backers are howling. The abrupt cancellation came after 221 House members, more than a majority, signed on as co-sponsors.
Now they’re hoping that the same public pressure that flamed a wildfire of congressional support – aided by a “60 Minutes” television report – will force GOP leaders to reconsider.
Critics say a ban on congressional insider trading is unnecessary. It’s already against the law. But Walz says it couldn’t hurt, given questions that have been raised about trades by House Speaker John Boehner, Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (California), and Financial Services Committee Chairman Spencer Bachus, (R-Alabama).
It was Bachus who had agreed in a hearing this week to bring Walz’s bill up for a committee vote next week. But he apparently had a change of heart after conferring with Cantor. Cantor and Bachus are now calling for more time to study the bill.
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