Thursday, January 19, 2017

Today's Swamp Denizen Comes Crawling Out

What a marvelous investor Tom Price is.

He bought stock in a maker of joint replacements a week before he introduced legislation that would help the company — which then made a campaign contribution to Price.

Nothing to see here, says the Trump team: A broker bought the shares without Price’s knowledge.

Sorry. I meant his broker. 

Also last year, Price himself bought shares in an Australian immunotherapy company after hearing about it from fellow congressman Chris Collins (R-N.Y.), who is on the company’s board and is a member of Trump’s transition team. Price was included in a private placement of stock not available to the public, and Price’s price was right: His investment is reportedly up 400 percent.

I could be wrong, but that sounds a lot like insider trading. Let's ask Martha Stewart. 

“These sound like sweetheart deals,” observed Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.). “I think our job in this body and in Congress and in government is to avoid the appearance of a conflict, and, boy, you have not done this.”

OK, Al Franken then. 

Each day of the Trump transition seems to deliver a new blow to the embattled notion of honest government. The House Republican majority, in its first major action of the new session, attempted to defang and gag the Office of Congressional Ethics. 

And the effort goes on with the strong-arming of Walter Schaub by Jason Chaffetz and Reince Priebus. 

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