By Corinne Murdock |
On Thursday, Senator Mark Kelly (D-AZ) claimed that he doesn’t engage in stock trading. Yet last year, Kelly was fined for violating the Stop Trading On Congressional Knowledge (STOCK) Act.
Kelly tweeted that he also doesn’t benefit from corporate political action committee (PAC) money, and has a public Senate schedule.
“These are the standards I hold myself to,” stated Kelly. “And I’m working to make it the standard for the whole Senate.”
The stock trading that earned Kelly his fine was with Boom Technology (previously known as Boom Aerospace, or Boom Supersonic): a Chinese-partnered company designing supersonic aircrafts on whose board Kelly served from 2015 to 2019. Kelly failed to file a disclosure on exercising that stock option for four months. The STOCK Act requires legislators to disclose that action within 30 days of notification or 45 days of the transaction.
REVIEW SENATOR KELLY’S STOCK DISCLOSURES
In January, Kelly introduced legislation to ban members of Congress and their families from selling stocks while in office: the Ban on Congressional Stock Trading Act. It hasn’t moved out of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee since then.
Other Democrats introduced similar bills after Kelly’s was introduced, also fated to wait in committees: Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal (D-WA-07) with the Bipartisan Ban on Congressional Stock Ownership Act of 2022, and Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and Congresswoman Katie Porter (D-CA-45) with the STOCK Act 2.0.
Kelly currently uses the motionless bill to fundraise for his campaign through ActBlue. The fundraising page also alleges that Kelly rejects corporate PAC money.
Kelly’s claim is technically true — corporate funds to his campaign don’t come from a PAC, but they do come from corporate executives. According to Federal Election Commission (FEC) records, Kelly’s campaign receives a majority of its major donations from his PAC called the Mark Kelly Victory Fund. That fund, in turn, receives money from major corporate executives. From January 2021 through June 2022, the fund’s biggest donations were nearly a dozen $20,800 donations from individuals directly in or closely associated with the corporate world.
For example: in June, Kelly received $41,600 from Michael Michelson and his wife, Georgia Taylor Michelson. Michael serves on the board of directors for Zimmer Biomet, a medical device corporation.
Corinne Murdock is a reporter for AZ Free News. Follow her latest on Twitter, or email tips to firstname.lastname@example.org.