WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) delivered the following remarks on the STOCK Act and applauded Representatives Tim Walz (D-MN) and Louise Slaughter (D-NY) for their efforts on this bipartisan bill to prevent Members of Congress, federal officials and staff from using non-public information for financial gain.
"Our government was founded on a promise. This promise was built on a trust between the people and its elected officials. We all have a duty to honor the trust of the American people and to work faithfully on their behalf. It is unacceptable for anyone, any elected official, or their staff, to profit from information that is not available to the public.
"People in this country have a right to know and trust that officials at all levels of government are living under the same rules they are. If there is even the slightest appearance of impropriety, we ought to go ahead and prevent that from taking place. It is incumbent upon each of us to start restoring trust between the people and their elected representatives.
"That’s what the STOCK Act is all about.
"Members from both sides of the aisle have worked hard on this issue. I would especially like to express my appreciation to Representatives Tim Walz and Louise Slaughter for their years of work on this effort. Congressman Walz has been a leader on the STOCK Act since he took office at the start of 110th Congress and I particularly want to recognize his willingness to reach across the aisle, and keep the lines of communication open as we worked to make clear that elected officials abide by the same rules as the American people.
"This bill we are bringing to the floor today puts in place measures that both strengthen and expand the Senate’s work on the STOCK Act, as well as removed provisions that would have made the bill unworkable, or raised far more questions than they would have answered.
"We expanded the bill to ensure that Executive Branch officials and their employees are subject to the same reporting and disclosure requirements as those in Congress.
"We must all live under the same rules.
"We also included a provision championed by Representative Robert Dold to ensure that members of Congress who are convicted of a crime do not receive a taxpayer-funded pension after the fact.
"And finally, Madam Speaker, we added a provision to prohibit members of Congress, Executive Branch officials and their staffs from receiving special access to Initial Public Offerings due to their positions. We intend to act quickly to send the President a strengthened, workable bill that delivers on our promise to uphold the trust of the American people.
"And I urge all my colleagues to support the STOCK Act."