CONFLICT OF INTEREST

Ethics Watchdog Wants to Probe Trump’s HHS Nominee for Stock Trading

Public Citizen, an independent ethics watchdog, is asking the Office of Congressional Ethics and the Securities and Exchange Commission to investigate Reps. Tom Price (R-GA) and Chris Collins (R-NY) over their recent stock trading that may present conflicts of interest. Price, President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee for secretary of Health and Human Services, has been reported to have traded hundreds of thousands of dollars in health-care stocks while pushing for different medical- and pharmaceutical-related legislation in Congress and as chairman the House Budget Committee. Senate Democrats held a press conference Thursday morning to highlight the potential financial conflicts of interest, and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer later tweeted: “HHS nominee Rep Price didn’t just vote on health care bills on the House floor. He championed them & he profited from them. #RiggedCabinet.” In 2012, the U.S. Senate passed a ban on insider trading for members of Congress. “The public information available falls short of hard evidence of insider trading, but the patterns of trading activity certainly warrant further investigation to determine if it occurred,” said Craig Holman of Public Citizen.