Sen. David Perdue had never invested in the Navy supplier BWX Technologies until right before he assumed control of the Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Seapower.
Kedric Payne, who analyzes stock trades at the Campaign Legal Center, a nonpartisan money-in-politics advocacy group, said Perdue’s example is the very reason why many lawmakers avoid trading individual stocks. “It is nearly impossible to make decisions affecting an industry and then receive a personal financial benefit without appearing to have a conflict of interest,” said Payne. “Even if officials rely on financial advisors to make trading decisions on their behalf, the perception of conflicts of interest remains because the public does not know if there are winks and nods prompting the trades.”
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