After House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) proposed possible new legislation to limit the practice of insider stock trading among members of Congress, even some within his own ranks have anonymously voiced their opposition to such a plan.
As reported by the New York Post, McCarthy first made the suggestion to Punchbowl News, suggesting such a bill as one of many things he would want to see introduced if the GOP retakes the majority in November. Among other things, his proposal would restrict members to only holding professionally managed funds, as well as prohibit lawmakers from owning stocks in companies that are overseen by committees they serve on.
McCarthy pointed to the example of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), who has a net worth of over $100 million, and whose husband was found to have traded millions more worth of tech stocks. “I just think if you’re the Speaker of the House, you control what comes to the floor, what goes through committee, you have all the power to do everything you want,” McCarthy said on Tuesday. “You can’t be trading millions of dollars.”
Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) called China the “most sophisticated” actor of foreign countries subverting our biomedical research in last week’s Senate hearing on the topic. This follows the release of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence’s (DNI) Annual Threat Assessment of the US Intelligence Community earlier this month. That assessment, cited by Sen. Burr, noted that “China will remain the top threat to US technological competitiveness as the CCP targets key technology sectors and proprietary commercial and military technology from US and allied companies and research institutions associated with defense, energy, finance, and other sectors.”
In the Senate hearing, panelists disclosed several disturbing cases of research theft by the CCP and its agents. Dr. Michael Lauer, Deputy Director for Extramural Research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), testified that Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Florida, fired its CEO and five other senior people for connections to the Thousand Talents Program. Gary Cantrell, Deputy Inspector General for Investigations at the Office of Investigations of the Office of Inspector General (OIG) at the Department of Health and Human Services, provided in written testimony examples of two researchers who had been compromised with China ties as found by OIG fraud investigations.
Cantrell’s first example was a professor of internal medicine who led a team conducting autoimmune research at The Ohio State University and Pennsylvania State University. This professor pled guilty in late 2020 to making false statements to federal authorities to get $4.1 million in NIH grants and failing to disclose “his participation in a Chinese Talent Plan and his affiliation and collaboration with a Chinese university controlled by the Chinese government.”