As discussed by the United States Congress whether to impose a ban on stock trading among its members, Gov. Phil Murphy said today that although he has no specific proposal to do something similar in New Jersey, he is not against the idea.
“Would I be open to something like that? The answer is probably yes, ”Murphy said. “It seems to me that Congress is going in the right direction, it seems to me that it is right.”
The proposed ban in Congress, which appears to have been backed by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), is in part a response to a number of congressional reports – among them the representative Tom Malinowski (D-Ringoes) – who failed to properly disclose their exchange trading activities.
Murphy himself handed over his shares to a blind trust before becoming governor, but the law did not oblige him to do so. The governor, cabinet members and state legislators are not required to cease their shareholding activities while in office.
And according to Mick Rasmussen, director of the New Jersey Institute of Politics at Ryder University, that can be hard to change.
“I don’t know if the legislature will be willing to impose a general restriction, knowing that some lawmakers who like their stock portfolio will reject them,” Rasmussen said. “Members of Congress clearly have a number of national issues that can regularly come into conflict with a large number of public companies. I don’t know that the state legislature has such a level of conflict. “
But Rasmussen said that if Congress does pass a ban, reform-minded New Jersey politicians can feel the courage to follow suit.
«[If] this restriction applies to members of Congress, then it would be reasonable to think that New Jersey may have similar restrictions for some ranks of its public officials, “he said.” I’m sure there will be a push. “