What Conflicts of Interest?

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This New York Times story on the budding Bill Frist stock scandal covers most of the main points (also, see ThinkProgress for a damning timeline), but this bit jumped out at me:

Though choosing to create a blind trust might help candidates politically, ethics rules do not require one. Many other government officials and members of Congress own or even trade stocks directly.

Really? On some level, this doesn’t much matter—it’s not like the fact that Frist owned HCA stock made his already-slavish devotion to the health care industry somehow more slavish. Still, you can see how it might create problems.

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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