Here in the U.S. we have the best government money can buy. As the healthcare debate has illustrated all too well, corporate lobbying goes a long way. But the problem goes beyond that. According to a new group on Facebook, Full Disclosure of U.S. Congress/Supreme Court Stock Portfolios NOW!
a look at investments in the defense industry held by members of Congress might make you wonder just what interests our military is defending.
According to the most recent reports of their personal finances, 151 current members of Congress had between $78.7 million and $195.5 million invested in companies that received defense contracts of at least $5 million in 2006. In all, these companies received more than $275.6 billion from the government in 2006, or $755 million per day, according to FedSpending.org, a website of the budget watchdog group OMB Watch.
in 2008, the Center for Responsive Politics, listed the following lawmakers as having the most money invested in companies with Department of Defense contracts:
Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass) $28,872,067 $38,209,020
Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-NJ) $12,081,050 $49,140,000
Rep. Robin Hayes (R-NC) $9,232,037 $37,105,000
Rep. James Sensenbrenner Jr. (R-Wis) $5,207,668 $7,612,653
Rep. Jane Harman (D-Calif) $2,684,050 $6,260,000
Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich) $2,469,029 $8,360,000
Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WVa) $2,000,002 $2,000,002
Rep. Tom Petri (R-Wis) $1,365,004 $5,800,000
Rep. Kenny Ewell Marchant (R-Texas) $1,163,231 $1,163,231
Rep. John Carter (R-Texas) $1,000,001 $5,000,000
The group is calling for support of the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act (STOCK Act) which:
would prohibit Members of Congress and their staff from using nonpublic information they are able to obtain through their official positions to enrich their personal portfolios.
This is an excellent idea and deserves the support of every American.