Two Democratic senators on Wednesday unveiled legislation that would prevent congressional lawmakers and their immediate families from trading stocks while in office, as new polling shows that an overwhelming majority of voters across the political spectrum support such a reform—something that Republicans putting\u0026nbsp;forward competing proposals are trying to capitalize on.\r\n\r\n\u0022Members of\u0026nbsp;Congress should not be playing the stock market while we make federal policy.\u0022\r\n\r\nThe Ban Congressional Stock Trading Act, introduced by Sens. Jon Ossoff (D-Ga.)\u0026nbsp;and Mark Kelly (D-Ariz.), would amend the Ethics in Government Act of 1978 to require members of Congress, their spouses, and dependent children\u0026nbsp;to place certain investments into blind trusts or divest them—ensuring they don\u0026#039;t profit from privileged information obtained on Capitol Hill.\r\n\r\n\u0022Members of\u0026nbsp;Congress should not be playing the stock market while we make federal policy,\u0022 Ossoff said in a statement.\r\n\r\nEmphasizing that \u0022elected leaders have access to valuable information that impacts policy, the economy, and entire industries,\u0022 Kelly said that if passed, the Ban Congressional Stock Trading Act \u0022will put an end to corrupt insider trading and ensure that leaders in Congress focus on delivering results for their constituents, not their stock\u0026nbsp;portfolios.\u0022\r\n\r\nMembers who violate the legislation\u0026#039;s rules would be fined their entire congressional salary.\r\n\r\nWith their new bill, Ossoff\u0026nbsp;and Kelly are\u0026nbsp;defying House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.). As Sludge reported Wednesday:\r\n\r\n\r\nPelosi made headlines last year with the multimillion dollar stock trades of her husband, investor Paul Pelosi, who among other plays\u0026nbsp;exercised call options\u0026nbsp;on Google stock in June that locked in $5.3 million in gains. Not done, the Pelosis purchased millions more in call options from December 17-21, just days after she defended the practice of stock trading by members of Congress in a press conference.\r\n\r\n\r\nPelosi\u0026#039;s argument—based on an easily debunked claim that the 2012 STOCK Act\u0026#039;s financial transaction disclosure requirements\u0026nbsp;prevent insider trading among members of Congress—was condemned by government watchdog groups and progressives, who warned that her opposition to regulating the practice could have negative political repercussions for the Democratic Party.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nReferencing recent polling, Ossoff said Wednesday that \u00223/4 of Americans agree\u0022 that\u0026nbsp;lawmakers and their immediate family\u0026nbsp;members should not be allowed to buy and sell stock while in office given\u0026nbsp;conflicts of interest.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nThe popularity of barring members of Congress from trading stocks has not been lost on Republicans.\u0026nbsp;\r\n\r\nAs Common Dreams reported earlier this week,\u0026nbsp;Republican House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) is considering enacting such a ban if the GOP wins control of the House in the upcoming midterms.\r\n\r\nAnd on Wednesday, Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) unveiled his own, less stringent proposal to rein in Congress\u0026#039; insider trading problem.\r\n\r\nBusiness Insider, which obtained a copy\u0026nbsp;of Hawley\u0026#039;s bill, reported that the Missouri Republican\u0026#039;s legislation excludes dependent children—even though they may have access to the same nonpublic information as their lawmaking parent—and \u0022would require violators to forfeit any profits gained from stock-trading directly to the U.S. Treasury.\u0022\r\n\r\nAccording to a survey conducted last month by the Trafalgar Group on behalf of the Convention of State Action,\u0026nbsp;a conservative advocacy organization, roughly 76% of voters\u0026nbsp;say that members of Congress and their spouses have an unfair advantage and should not be allowed to trade stocks while in office. That includes over\u0026nbsp;78% of Republicans and nearly 80% of Independents.\r\n\r\nAs\u0026nbsp;Common Dreams\u0026nbsp;reported\u0026nbsp;in April 2020, Republican and Democratic members of Congress made nearly 1,500 stock transactions worth up to $158 million in the weeks leading up to, and following the onset of, the Covid-19 pandemic—in many cases purchasing stocks in companies that might see a boost during the crisis and dumping stocks that seemed likely to decrease in value.\r\n\r\nOssoff and Hawley are not the first lawmakers to introduce bills to combat insider trading among members of Congress, though the new legislation reflects growing momentum to tackle the issue. Ossoff acknowledged that his proposal is similar to the bipartisan TRUST in Congress Act, unveiled last year by Reps. Abigail Spanberger (D-Va.) and Chip Roy (R-Texas).\r\n\r\nCongressional Progressive Caucus Chair Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), meanwhile, noted on Wednesday night that she and Sen. Elizabeth Warren\u0026#039;s (D-Mass.)\u0026nbsp;Anti-Corruption and Public Integrity Act, first introduced in 2018 and reportedly slated to be reintroduced this year, would ban \u0022members of Congress, cabinet secretaries, federal judges, and other officials from owning and trading stock or serving on corporate boards.\u0022\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nInsider trading scandals played a major role in Ossoff and Sen. Raphael Warnock\u0026#039;s (D-Ga.) victories over then-incumbent Republican Sens. David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler during last year\u0026#039;s pivotal runoff elections in Georgia.\r\n\r\nPerdue and Loeffler were two of several lawmakers accused of using information\u0026nbsp;obtained during early briefings about the threat posed by the coronavirus to buy and sell stocks.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nAfter Ossoff\u0026nbsp;publicly condemned\u0026nbsp;Perdue, calling him a \u0022crook\u0022 who sought to profit from the Covid-19 pandemic while downplaying its severity and undermining his constituents\u0026#039; access to healthcare, his Republican opponent refused to share a stage with him.\r\n\r\nOssoff\u0026nbsp;fulfilled his pledge\u0026nbsp;to put his own stock portfolio into a blind trust last year, making him and Kelly two of\u0026nbsp;just 10\u0026nbsp;sitting\u0026nbsp;members of Congress to do so.