Today's Winner: US Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler

We're naming the freshman Republican rep from the 3rd Congressional District, Jaime Herrera Beutler, a belated winner for a story that broke yesterday.

The Seattle Times reported that Herrera Beutler was picking up her Democratic predecessor's legislation to stop insider trading among members of Congress who are privy to behind-the-scenes info about pending bills that could impact the values of company stocks.

Former 3rd District Rep. Brian Baird was on 60 Minutes last weekend talking about the problem of congressional insider trading and his failed legislation to fight it.

Herrera Beutler was not one of the co-sponsors when the bill was reintroduced this year after Baird left (it went nowhere again), but was inspired, her office says, by the 60 Minutes piece, and is now signing on as a co-sponsor for another try.

The Times reports:

Casey Bowman, Herrera Beutler's spokesman, said in an email that the lawmaker "hopes the momentum created by the (60 Minutes) story will give this legislation traction, and she hopes her support of the bill will further its momentum."

As for Herrera Beutler's belated backing for the bill, Bowman said "her focus is on helping the folks in southwest Washington, so it’s fair to say that she wasn’t thinking about insider trading prior to the 60 Minutes story."

In addition to the 60 Minutes report, the non-partisan campaign finance watchdog group Center for Responsive Politics issued a study this week detailing the net worths of members of Congress and found that senators and reps had significant holdings in big corporate players such as General Electric ($3.6 million worth), Bank of America ($2.8 million worth), Microsoft ($3.2 million), and AT&T ($2.2 million) among others.

Herrera Beutler is in the lower caste of congressional net worth ($8,000).

No loser today, just a non-Jolt.

Today we got a press release from the lefty Service Employees International Union ("for immediate release") announcing that they're endorsing President Obama in 2012.
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