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Watchdog group says Iowa Rep. Axne stock trades violate ethics law

Rep. Cindy Axne, D-Iowa., questions Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell as he testifies...
Rep. Cindy Axne, D-Iowa., questions Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell as he testifies before the House Financial Services Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, July 10, 2019.(Susan Walsh | AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
Published: Sep. 23, 2021 at 1:52 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - A non-partisan watchdog group says Iowa Congresswoman Cindy Axne and 6 other members of Congress broke the law by not reporting stock trades.

The Campaign Legal Center sent a letter asking the Office of Congressional Ethics to investigate stock trades Rep. Axne and other members of Congress made but did not disclose publicly. The members accused include Four democrats and three republicans, including five members of the House Financial Services Committee. Rep. Axne is a Democrat and represents Iowa’s Third District covering Des Moines, Council Bluffs and southwest Iowa.

According to the CLC, Axne’s financial disclosures noted a change in her stock holdings, indicating she sold and bought stock valued between $43,000 and $645,000. The STOCK Act requires members of Congress to disclose individual stock sales in a timely manner, not just on their annual disclosure of assets in order to quickly identify potential conflicts of interest to the public.

In response, Rep. Axne’s office issued a statement refuting allegations she intentionally hid the stock sales, noting she did include them in her annual disclosure. Her office also suggested the sales may have been part of an independently managed retirement account she did not directly oversee.

Statement from Rep. Axne’s office:

“While Congresswoman Axne completes her own financial disclosures, she does not personally manage or execute transactions related to her retirement account or the ones she has with her husband or her small business. In accordance with her legal requirements, she has submitted all required disclosures of her assets through her first three years in Congress. If there are errors with those disclosures, they are unintentional and the Congresswoman will take immediate and all necessary steps to ensure her disclosures are accurate and in accordance with the law.”

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