WVIR: Rep. Spanberger introduces bill aimed at rebuilding trust in Congress


7th District Democratic Congresswoman Abigail Spanberger is working to rebuild trust and transparency on Capitol Hill.

The Democrat is reintroducing a bill called the TRUST in Congress Act that she says gained greater significance at the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

“The fact that there was even the worry or concern that while members of Congress should be focused on how to contend with a global pandemic, they might be making stock choices, to me was worrisome,” Spanberger said.

The bill would require all members of Congress to put certain investment assets in a blind trust during their time in office. A member would be eligible to remove assets 180 days after leaving Congress.

“We should remove not just the ability to behave improperly but even the possibility of that perception,” Spanberger said.

According to the nonpartisan Campaign Legal Center, in 2020 lawmakers on both sides of the aisle made potentially unethical decisions buying and selling stocks with information gained from their positions.

“This is about doing the right thing. This isn’t even a close call. This is obvious, and by the way it has bipartisan support,” University of Virginia Center for Politics Director Larry Sabato said.

Spanberger’s office contacted Sabato seeking his thoughts on the bill, and he’s now a public supporter. Sabato says most lawmakers already have blind trusts, so this bill would root out those who don’t.

“This bill is designed to weed out the relative handful of members who are using the information they gain in Congress in an inappropriate way,” Sabato said.

Democrats promised sweeping legislation with their new majorities in Congress and the Democratic lawmaker is hopeful this bill will be one to become law.

“I think there will be a little bit of work to continue to push this forward. I imagine there’s going to be some hesitancy on the part of some of my colleagues, but the exciting part is it really has drawn a very broad coalition of folks together,” Spanberger said.

Recent Posts

Feb 22, 2024

Spanberger Urges Health Insurers to Fully Cover Birth Control, As Required by the Affordable Care Act

This Effort Comes After Years of Systemic Noncompliance by Insurance Plans & Women Paying Out of Pocket or Facing Administrative Red Tape to Access Birth Control WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger today joined more than 150 U.S. House and U.S. Senate colleagues in urging health insurers to improve access to birth control by […]

Feb 21, 2024

Spanberger Announces Sixth Annual Congressional Art Competition, Invites Virginia High School Students to Submit Artwork

The Winner’s Artwork Will Be Displayed in the U.S. Capitol Building for One Year Alongside Winners from All 50 States WOODBRIDGE, Va. — U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger today invited high school students from Virginia’s Seventh District to submit original artwork for the annual Congressional Art Competition. Every year, Members of the U.S. House of Representatives […]

Feb 16, 2024

ICYMI: Spanberger Hosts Virtual Telephone Town Hall Focused on Issues Facing Virginia Veterans & Military Families

During Thursday’s Interactive Event, the Congresswoman & Representatives from the Virginia Department of Veterans Services Were Joined by More Than 4,100 Virginians WOODBRIDGE, Va. — On Thursday, U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger hosted an open, public telephone town hall focused on issues facing Virginia’s Veterans, military families, and caregivers. During the event, Spanberger was joined by representatives […]