Republican Senator Bill Hagerty violated a federal conflict of interest law with late stock sale disclosures

Senator Bill Hagerty of Tennessee

Sen. Bill Hagerty, R-Tennessee, waited months past the federal deadline before disclosing his dependent children’s stock trading. His office blamed the late disclosure on a “clerical error by the investment firm that handles the family’s finances.”Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

  • Senator Bill Hagerty violated the Federal SECURITIES Act with late trade disclosures.

  • Hagerty reported selling shares of her children’s trusts that were collectively worth between $45,000 and $150,000.

  • Lawmakers are debating whether they and their families should be allowed to trade.

Republican Sen. Bill Hagerty of Tennessee appears to have violated a federal conflict-of-interest law by reporting three stock trades several months past the federal deadline, according to a review of his financial statement just filed with Congress.

Hagerty reported selling shares in Signature Bank from three of his dependent children’s trusts. Together, the sales are worth between $45,000 and $150,000. While the sales were made in December 2021, Hagerty waited until July 2022 to report the transactions.

Members of Congress must report transactions no later than 45 days after making them, according to the Stop Trading With the Knowledge of Congress (STOCK) Act of 2012. When reporting transactions, legislators are only required to provide the value of their transactions in broad ranges rather than the specific value.

Hagerty’s office told Insider Wednesday that the late transactions are the result of a “clerical error by the investment firm that handles the family’s finances,” and that the transactions were reported as soon as they were discovered when compiling the report. Hagerty’s next annual financial disclosure.

The office also told Insider that it has not spoken with anyone on the US Senate Select Committee on Ethics, but will cooperate with them if necessary. Members of Congress can face investigations and fines for late disclosures, but as Insider has previously reportedthose fines are often minimal and applied inconsistently.

This is not the first time that Hagerty has reported operations involving the financial interests of his children. In May, Hagerty revealed that each of her four children became minority owners of Nashville’s Major League Soccer team, Nashville FC.

At the time, Hagerty’s office told Insider that three of his four children are minors and that none of the bets come with any “management control.”

“All of these assets are liabilities, meaning they carry no managerial control and are held in trusts that are managed by a third-party trustee,” Hagerty spokesman Judd Deere wrote in an email.

Hagerty himself said in a brief interview that he is “not sure where my investment portfolio is going to go in the next few years.”

Members of Congress continue to violate the STOCK Act

privileged information”Congress in conflictThe project and other publications have discovered since 2021 66 members of Congress that they have violated the STOCK Act by being late in disclosing transactions. Additionally, Insider found that at least 182 top congressional officials also violated the law.

Currently, members of Congress, their spouses and dependent children have the right to trade individual shares. There has, however, been a recent bipartisan move to bar lawmakers, and possibly their spouses and dependent children, from trading individual stocks.

Has been at least 10 separate invoices proposed in both the House and Senate to limit lawmakers from trading individual stocks, according to OpenSecrets.

“The American people have second thoughts when they read studies that say members of Congress have stock portfolios that perform significantly better than the general public and wonder where they get that information from,” said Democratic Sen. Jeff Merkley, who introduced the Ban. in conflict. Trade Law.

Across the aisle, Senator Josh Hawley introduced his own proposal, the Insider Trading Prohibition Act, to Congress.

“Year after year, politicians somehow manage to outperform the market, buying and selling millions in stock in companies they are supposed to regulate. Wall Street and Big Tech work hand in hand with elected officials to enrich each other through the country’s expense,” Hawley said in a Press release calling to ban members and their spouses from trading shares.

Donald Sherman, senior vice president and senior adviser at Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, told Insider that the STOCK Act doesn’t do enough to dissuade members of Congress from complying: The common result of a STOCK Act violation is a $200 fine — leading to further mistrust of government.

“The STOCK Act is obviously not enough to deter non-compliance, and individually, I understand that voters don’t make decisions based on these kinds of things,” Sherman said. “But I think the perception that members of Congress benefit financially from their positions in government is corrosive and is one reason why many Americans have no faith in government and why some feel that voting or other mechanisms to legally participating in government are not attractive. to them”.

Read the original article at Business Insider

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