The House passed a bill banning Congress and executive branch officials from insider trading, but brushed aside a provision aimed at reining in those who pry financial information from Congress and sell it to investment firms.
Thursday's 417-2 vote likely sends the legislation to a House-Senate conference, where supporters of the tougher regulation will try to restore the proposal that was included in the version passed by the Senate. Voting against the bill were Reps. John Campbell, R-Calif. and Rep. Rob Woodall, R-Ga.
The language in dispute would require so-called political
intelligence firms to register the same as lobbyists, and they would
have to file public reports on their spending and contacts with federal
officials. Portions of the financial industry lobbied for removal of the
proposal. "The Republican leadership couldn't stomach the pressure,"
said Rep. Louise Slaughter, D-N.Y., who has been trying to get an
insider trading bill passed for six years. She said the bill "let the
political intelligence community off the hook."