Corruption

Fired U.S. Attorney Was Investigating Tom Price

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

We already know U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara was investigating Fox News and that a federal grand jury had already been convened to consider indicting several executives, but Bharara was also investigating Health and Inhumane Services Secretary Tom Price.

According to a source who spoke to ProPublica, Bharara was investigating the strong possibility that Tom Price used access to insider information as a congressman to make money.

[Tom Price] traded hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of shares in health-related companies, even as he voted on and sponsored legislation affecting the industry.

Price testified at the time that his trades were lawful and transparent. Democrats accused him of potentially using his office to enrich himself. One lawmaker called for an investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission, citing concerns Price could have violated the STOCK Act, a 2012 law signed by President Obama that clarified that members of Congress cannot use nonpublic information for profit and requires them to promptly disclose their trades.

The investigation of Price’s trades by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, which hasn’t been previously disclosed, was underway at the time of Bharara’s dismissal, said the person.

The accusations against Price are well known, but Bharara's investigation was not.

If we had a functioning Oversight Committee, this might be something they would want to take a look at but, as things stand, it's more likely that Republicans will attempt to repeal the STOCK Act at some point in the near future than investigate one of their own.

The good news, if there is any, is that Bharara has been temporarily replaced by Joon Kim, Bharara's chief counsel. Kim is expected to continue Bharara's active investigations until Trump nominates a replacement and that may never happen. Trump hasn't nominated anyone to fill hundreds of positions.

Why would Trump fire dozens of attorneys without replacements in mind? Maybe because Sean Hannity told him to.

  • muselet

    The timing of at least some of Tom Price’s stock trades does seem to be unreasonably fortunate, so an investigation is justifiable.

    The decision to fire Preet Bharara may have been a short-sighted one. It’s only going to make every future move the administration makes with regard to Price look that much more suspicious, even if Bharara wasn’t actually looking into Price. Better just to let things run their course.

    (It occurs to me that the administration is behaving as if its background check of Price was either inadequate or nonexistent, and it got caught flat-footed. But that couldn’t possibly be the case, could it?)

    I like to believe I’d feel the same way if Tom Price weren’t a terrible human being.

    –alopecia

  • Aynwrong

    Donald Trump in the White House is everything that the Republican party has not so secretly dreamed of for decades. An unthinking, incurious moron who can be be made to support every effort to help turn America into the world’s largest company town by merely plying him with the same propaganda that they’ve brainwashed their voters with.

    We’re in full blown banana republic territory here people. And I don’t mean everybody’s favorite khaki selling outlet.