This is the SWAMP: Four senators sold millions in stocks ahead of Wall Street’s coronavirus crash after being briefed about what was coming
03/21/2020 // JD Heyes // Views

President Trump swept into office three years ago on a pledge to, among other things, “drain the swamp.”

It was a bipartisan promise, of course, because it had to be. 

Washington, D.C., is a Democrat-run city, but the Donkey Party is far from alone when it comes to corruption. Over the years, Republicans have had their share of scandals as well.

And we’re seeing that bipartisan scandal again.

Without proclaiming that anyone is guilty, it sure seems ‘odd’ that four senators were just outed for having sold millions of dollars in stock before the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak caused the markets to tank in recent weeks.

Coincidence? Perhaps. And perhaps not; the sales were made after senators were briefed about the coming tsunami of coronavirus cases.

Two of them — Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California and GOP Sen. Richard Burr of North Carolina sit on the Senate Intelligence Committee, where members have top clearances so they can hear the highest-classified secrets known only to our various intelligence agencies. (Related: Flashback: China shills at WHO served as propagandists for Beijing by repeating lie that coronavirus wasn’t “contagious”.)

As the UK’s Daily Mail reports: 

Four senators dumped millions of dollars worth of stock while Capitol Hill was being briefed on the threat of coronavirus but before the markets tanked as infections soared, disclosure records have revealed. 

Republicans Richard Burr, Kelly Loeffler and James Inhofe and Democrat Dianne Feinstein collectively offloaded up to $11 million in stock between late January and early February, according to records seen by The Daily BeastNew York Times and ProPublica


This is a big deal if true

According to reports:

— Burr sold $1.7 million worth of stock including investments in hotels; the hospitality industry is being hit hard by coronavirus-related orders from the federal government, governors and mayors to self-quarantine and avoid travel, leaving them empty.

— Feinstein sold up to $6 million including a biotech firm that stood to lose from the outbreak. 

— Loeffler got rid of $3.1 million the day the Senate Health Committee, which she is on, was briefed about the virus outbreak by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

— Inhofe ditched $400,000 in stock including real estate that may have stood to lose value in a virus-induced recession.

Both Loeffler and Feinstein used the excuse that their stocks are invested in blind trusts and portfolios and they have no personal control over them (right; because you just give money to strangers and say, ‘Do with it what you please!’).

A spokeswoman for Burr said that he filed his financial disclosure forms several weeks before markets showed any “volatility.” But of course, that’s the purpose of dumping stocks you know will be hard-hit long before an event like a pandemic takes root. 

It’s called “insider trading” and it’s very illegal.

What’s more, while insider trading is illegal for everyone, there is a special law called the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act which specifically prohibits lawmakers from engaging in trading based on classified information they get in briefings.

For Loeffler, it gets even better: Her hubby, Jeffrey Sprecher, is the chairman of the New York Stock Exchange. They sold their stock between late January and early February, right about the time President Trump was ramping up his coronavirus task force and response.

The stock that Loeffler sold has since lost half its value, by the way. 

Burr, after selling his stock, would later tell people at a meeting in Washington that the outbreak would likely cause grave damage to commerce and business, even as President Trump was downplaying all of that. 

“It is probably more akin to the 1918 pandemic,” Burr told members of the Tar Heel Circle, part of the Capitol Hill Club, a private social club for Republicans very close to the Capitol Building.

Sources include:

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