Energy Secretary Under Fire Over Illegal Stock Trades

Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) is demanding answers from Department of Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm, a former Democratic governor of Michigan, over alleged illegal stock trades and violations of federal laws. Hawley accused Granholm of “institutional corruption” within the Biden administration during a Senate hearing on Tuesday.

When questioned by Hawley, Granholm claimed she was simply mistaken in not revealing her ownership of various stock holdings. “Oh my goodness, I believed that I had sold all individual stocks, and I was incorrect,” she responded.

But Hawley wasn’t buying it. He cited a watchdog group’s findings that Granholm allegedly violated the Stock Act on nine occasions and ran afoul of the Hatch Act numerous times, which prohibits public officials from being active in political campaigns or efforts.

Hawley reminded Granholm that he had previously asked her point-blank if she held individual stocks, and she said no. “It turns out that was false. You owned multiple individual stocks, and you neglected to report them to this committee for months afterwards. Why did you mislead this committee?” he asked.

Granholm confessed to owning six individual stocks in a June 2023 letter to the committee, claiming to have sold them in May. “So I came back as soon as I found out that, in fact, I had not sold all individual stocks,” she told Hawley.

But the senator wasn’t impressed. “Why did you mislead us and what were you hiding? Why did you wait so long? Why did you hide this?” he pressed.

Hawley’s skepticism might be justified. Granholm reportedly violated the Stock Act on nine different occasions in 2021, filing two reports with the Office of Government Ethics way past the 45-day window that government officials have to report such transactions.

The allegations against Granholm have raised concerns about transparency and following federal laws within the Biden administration. As the congressional investigation unfolds, the Energy Secretary is under increasing pressure to provide a better explanation for her alleged misconduct and the delayed reporting of her stock holdings.