A 2022 POGO investigation revealed that the State Department is quietly granting waivers approving this work, including for countries the U.S. has criticized for human rights violations or authoritarianism.
The American people shouldn’t have to question the motives of our leaders. But current laws don’t go far enough to ensure that those in power are working with the best interests of the United States and its people in mind. The rules around financial conflicts of interest are not strong enough to ensure that lawmakers aren’t profiting from the decisions we empower them to make every day. When the few rules that do exist are broken, penalties aren’t consistently applied. We’re pushing for stronger rules and enforcement, so the American people don’t have to wonder whether our leaders are working for us or working to line their own pockets.
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What’s at Stake
The Supreme Court is the only judicial body in the country without a code of conduct. With more stories raising questions about their impartiality, the highest, most influential judges in the land should be tied to ethics standards.
Unlike the rest of us, lawmakers have access to privileged, non-public information. The decisions they make can move markets. Despite this, there’s no law preventing them from buying and selling stocks while in office.
Public Integrity and Anti-Corruption Laws at the DOD The Bridge: The House Always Wins State Dept. Is Quietly Approving Former Servicemembers’ Work for Foreign Interests. That’s a Problem. Representatives are Too Invested in Defense Contractors Reforms Needed to Enhance Rule of Law, Crack Down on Foreign Influence American Voters Say Corruption is a Concern; Congress Should Heed the Message