Democrats are ethics hypocrites

Washington Free Beacon:
Congressional Democrats pushing for an ethics probe into a Trump cabinet nominee’s stock trades have their own histories of investing in sectors of the economy they oversee, public records show.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.) last week called for an investigation into stock trades by Rep. Tom Price (R., N.C.), who President-elect Donald Trump has tapped to lead the Department of Health and Human Services.

Schumer and Senate Democrats are focusing on Price’s stock portfolio and trading history, which has included holdings in a number of health and insurance companies.

“We don’t know if he broke the law, but there are certainly enough serious questions to warrant an investigation before any hearing is held on Congressman Price to become secretary of HHS,” Schumer said at a press conference last week.

Senate Democrats’ strategy on the Price nomination is part of a larger focus on alleged conflicts of interest among Trump cabinet nominees. However, unlike a number of those nominees Price’s personal financial information is publicly available due to reporting requirements for members of Congress.

At issue are 40 trades in health industry companies worth more than $300,000. Schumer and Sens. Patty Murray (D., Wash.) and Ron Wyden (D., Ore.), the ranking Democrats on the Health and Finance Committees, respectively, want to put Price’s nomination on hold pending an investigation into those trades and whether they coincided with legislation written or supported by Price.

That strategy could open up Senate Democrats to criticism, as Schumer, Wyden, and Democratic members of the Finance and Health Committees, which will both hold confirmation hearings for Price next week, have also traded in industries they oversee.

Schumer himself owned securities that likely benefitted from policies he advanced in his official capacity.

A former member of the Finance and Banking Committees, and the top Senate recipient of Wall Street money in 2009, Schumer was a leading voice for the federal takeover of mortgage insurers Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in 2008. At the time, he owned thousands of dollars in bonds from both of the troubled government-sponsored enterprises.
Schumer had purchased Fannie and Freddie bonds in late 2002. By the following year, he was arguing against more stringent regulation of the enterprises, suggesting in an Oct. 2003 hearing that “recent safety and soundness concerns” were rooted in “ideological” opposition to the government’s role in insuring home loans.

Schumer held those bonds until late 2008, personal financial disclosures show, when he redeemed between $15,000 and $50,000 from Fannie Mae just a few months after the Treasury Department placed Fannie and Freddie into conservatorship.

The following year, he redeemed between $31,000 and $115,000 in Freddie Mac bonds.

Schumer spokesman Matt House explained that both entities had called in those bonds, and that Schumer himself had not chosen to redeem them. However, he did not dispute that Schumer supported the government’s takeover of Fannie and Freddie while holding bonds issued by both, or that that takeover likely improved the value of those bonds.
There is more.

Schumer is not the only Democrat to profit from preventing more intensive oversight of the housing market.  It was that lack of oversight along with Democrat policies forcing institutions to make loans to people with poor credit that caused the housing and financial crises.


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