(PatrioticPost.com)- A Republican senator being criticized for stock trades he made that look a little suspicious.
Tommy Tuberville, a senator from Alabama, purchased thousands of stocks in companies that produce computer chips only a few days prior to President Joe Biden signing a bill that will give billions of dollars in subsidies to U.S. companies to boost their production of chip manufacturing.
Recent financial disclosures show that on August 5, Tuberville purchased up to $265,000 of stock in Intel. Four days after that, the president signed what is known as the CHIPS Plus Act.
It’s a bipartisan bill that allocates $52 billion to use as subsidies to incentivize American companies to increase their domestic manufacturing of computer chips. The goal of the bill is to ease up America’s reliance on foreign companies for essential products such as computer chips, which caused major concerns during the supply chain crisis.
Intel is in fact one of the world’s largest manufacturers of computer chips, and has revenue of about $79 billion last year. Over the last few years, the company has even lobbied heavily for new subsidies that would help them increase their domestic production of these chips.
The Wall Street Journal released a report that said Intel agreed to a new deal worth $30 billion with an investment management group that will help the company build new factories to manufacture computer chips.
Surprisingly, Tuberville was actually one senator who did not vote in favor of the CHIPS Plus Act when it came up for a vote in July. That doesn’t mean he didn’t use information from it to profit personally, though.
One of his spokespeople said to the Daily Caller News Foundation that Tuberville “has long had financial advisors who actively manage his portfolio without his day-to-day involvement.”
That being said, a government watchdog group said any time a Congress member trades a stock “around major legislation” such as the CHIPS Plus Act, it’s natural for Americans to ask questions about it.
A spokesman for the watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, Jordan Libowitz, commented on the situation recently:
“Senator Tuberville’s purchases came after the votes, so it does not appear he was using non-public information. However, the fact that we’re being asked about this just shows how uncomfortable Americans are with their representatives making money off of the actions of Congress — even, in this case, on bills they voted against.”
The big legal and ethical questions that would arise from a situation like this would happen if Tuberville used information that wasn’t readily available to the public to make his investment choices. As the watchdog group said, though, he made the trades after the vote was taken — so he had the same information all other Americans did.
That being said, it also poses the question of whether members of Congress should be allowed to make stock trades at all, since they’re always privy to insider information. It’s the central argument some in Washington are making about why stock trades need to be banned for all members of Congress, their family members and staff.