Ethics and Accountability
Congresswoman Slaughter strongly believes that elected officials and other public servants should be held to the highest standards. For years, Congresswoman Slaughter has taken on the institutions of power that have rigged the system against the average American. Anyone who serves as a representative of the American people should be held accountable to the same standards of behavior as the citizens they serve. Whether she's opposing Wall Street tycoons who crashed the economy, corporations that cheat their way out of paying taxes, or members of Congress who behave unethically, the congresswoman consistently stands up for what is right.
- Presidential Accountability: No one should be above the law, especially the President of the United States. The congresswoman supports efforts to make sure that the White House is held to the standards that the American people expect and deserve.
- Political Intelligence Transparency: Political intelligence is a $400 million a year industry in which information gleaned from the halls of government is sold to Wall Street to inform investment decisions. Congresswoman Slaughter is working hard to pass disclosure and transparency requirements for the political intelligence industry. She believes that constituents didn't send members of Congress to Washington to fill the pockets of hedge fund managers. If there was ever a case to show that Wall Street and Capitol Hill have become too cozy, this is it. The political intelligence industry is in desperate need of transparency and should register disclosure filings just as the lobbying industry does.
- Supreme Court Ethics: Many Americans are surprised to learn that, unlike all other federal judges, the justices of the U.S. Supreme Court are not bound by a code of ethics. Justices participating in political events and failing to disclose potential conflicts of interest have undermined public confidence in the institution. The congresswoman believes that the Supreme Court should adopt its own code of ethics, which would go a long way to restore trust in the justices’ impartiality.
- Campaign Finance Reform: The Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission overturned a century of legal precedent by holding that unlimited corporate spending in elections was protected by the First Amendment. The court’s ruling unleashed a torrent of previously restricted spending by corporations to influence political campaigns. Corporations should not have free range to determine elections due to the size of their coffers and fundraising capabilities. Congresswoman Slaughter wants to give the power back to the people and change how campaigns are funded.
- Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge (STOCK) Act: Congresswoman Slaughter first introduced the STOCK Act in 2006 and was instrumental in getting the legislation passed and signed into law on April 4, 2012. The bill prohibits the use of non-public information for private profit, specifically targeting insider trading by members of Congress, their staff, and other government employees.
- Political Intelligence Transparency Act: The congresswoman first introduced the Political Intelligence Transparency Act in 2014. The legislation would require the disclosure of political intelligence activities. The bill would also add political intelligence to the same “revolving door” restrictions that apply to former federal officials.
- Supreme Court Ethics Act: Congresswoman Slaughter continues to fight to have the Supreme Court follow all five canons of the Code of Conduct for United States Judges. To achieve this, the congresswoman introduced the Supreme Court Ethics Act, which would require the Court to adopt the ethical standards imposed on all other federal judges.
- Presidential Accountability: Congresswoman Slaughter has cosponsored a number of pieces of legislation that would strengthen the ethical rules that apply to the president. These include: the Presidential Tax Transparency Act, which would require the president to disclosure their tax returns; the Presidential Conflicts of Interest Act, which would bring the president and vice president under federal conflict of interest laws; and the Federal Executive Accountability Act, which would create an inspector general to oversee the Executive Office of the President.
- Government by the People Act: To combat influential corporate spending, Congresswoman Slaughter was an original co-sponsor of the Government by the People Act of 2014. This legislation aims to shift political power from wealthy corporations to average citizens by increasing the strength of low dollar donations through matching public funds and encourages participation in the electoral system through a refundable tax credit.
More on Ethics and Accountability
WASHINGTON, DC — Congresswoman Louise Slaughter (NY-25), author of the STOCK Act, one of the most important ethics bills in a generation, today released this statement in reaction to an investigation finding that 40 Republican members of the House recently voted for the health care repeal bill while owning as much as $39 million in health care sector stock.
WASHINGTON, DC — Amid accelerating revelations of President Trump’s attempts to shut down the FBI’s investigation of his campaign and administration’s ties to Russia, Rep. Slaughter today signed a discharge petition to force the House to vote on bipartisan legislation establishing an independent, outside commission to investigate the Trump-Russia connection and possible collusion in the presidential election. Recent polling shows 78 percent of Americans want an independent investigation.
WASHINGTON, DC — Congresswoman Louise Slaughter (NY-25) announced today that she will be introducing legislation to strengthen the STOCK Act and close ethics loopholes, which have been taken advantage of by members of Congress to purchase exclusive stock deals not available to the general public and take part in initial public offerings (IPOs) outside the United States.
WASHINGTON, DC – Congresswoman Louise Slaughter (NY-25) and Senator Chris Murphy (CT) today introduced the Supreme Court Ethics Act. This bill would require the United States Supreme Court to adopt a code of ethics for Supreme Court justices. Unlike every other federal judge, Supreme Court justices are exempt from the Code of Conduct for United States Judges—a binding code of ethics that ensures neutrality and transparency in our courts.
WASHINGTON, DC — Congresswoman Louise Slaughter (NY-25) today pushed U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions for answers regarding the firing of former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York Preet Bharara. Recent reports suggest President Trump reversed course and fired Bharara, who was reportedly overseeing an investigation into questionable stock trades Secretary of Health and Human Services Tom Price made while serving in the House of Representatives. Slaughter also separately asked Acting U.S.
WASHINGTON, DC — Congresswoman Louise Slaughter (NY-25) released the following statement in reaction to President Trump’s Fiscal Year 2018 budget request. This outline proposes a $54 billion increase in defense spending paid for with drastic cuts to nondefense programs the American people rely on, impacting everything from the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Army Corps of Engineers to the Environmental Protection Agency and the State Department. A full budget is expected to be released in May.
WASHINGTON, DC —Rules Committee Ranking Member Louise Slaughter (NY-25) issued the following statement in reaction to Republican Representative Jim Jordan’s (R-OH) request for an open rule for the Republican health care bill.
WASHINGTON, DC — Congresswoman Louise Slaughter (NY-25) released the following statement in reaction to news reports that then-Senator Jeff Sessions lied under oath to the Senate Judiciary Committee during his confirmation hearing for attorney general about meetings with Russian officials:
WASHINGTON, DC — Congresswoman Louise Slaughter (NY-25) released the following statement in reaction to President Trump’s address to Congress tonight. Rochester resident Jonathan Siegel attended the president’s address as her guest to highlight how health care reform has expanded and improved health care for millions of Americans.
WASHINGTON, DC — Congresswoman Louise Slaughter (NY-25) today introduced the Weekend Voting Act, legislation that would move Election Day from the first Tuesday in November to the first Saturday and Sunday after the first Friday in November, making it more convenient for voters and increasing turnout. Reps. John Garamendi (CA-03), Eric Swalwell (CA-15), John Larson (CT-01), James Clyburn (SC-06), Paul Tonko (NY-20), Ruben Kihuen (NV-04), and Alcee Hastings (FL-20) joined Slaughter as original cosponsors.