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GA-Sen A: Georgia's Other Corrupt Stock Dumping Senator Is Trying To Cover His Ass

8 min read

Nothing to see here:

U.S. Sen. David Perdue, after seeing his portfolio scrutinized and criticized, says his advisers will no longer trade stocks in individual companies.

The Friday evening announcement coincided with the filing of a report that outlined trading on his behalf over the previous month.

“As you can see from the April report, Bonnie and I have restructured our retirement savings to eliminate individual stock trades,” Perdue said in a statement.

According to the report, after April 7 there were no purchases of company stocks made on Perdue’s behalf. The monthly Periodic Transactions Report shows sales and purchases within ranges, but the senator’s office provided exact figures to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Perdue’s advisers made 174 stocks sales totaling about $5.61 million in mid-April. That includes selling off shares in companies such as pharmaceutical conglomerate Pfizer, Starbucks, Delta Airlines and DuPont de Nemours, which makes personal protective equipment.

Here’s some more context:

Asked why Perdue made the change in his financial affairs, spokesperson Cherie Gillan told Atlanta Business Chronicle, “This was a personal decision Senator Perdue and his wife made to avoid any confusion about their retirement savings and they did so voluntarily.” She reinforced that they were not required to do so.

Perdue will keep his existing shares that he received for prior service as board member in public utility company Alliant Energy from February 2001 through December 2014; data marketing company Cardlytics, where he served on the board from November 2010 through Dec 2014; and box and carton maker Graphic Packaging, where he served from May 2011 through August 2014. These shares will be held in traditional brokerage accounts and will not be traded moving forward, Perdue's office said.

In a statement, Perdue said, “As you can see from the April report, Bonnie and I have restructured our retirement savings to eliminate individual stock trades. Since 2005, we have retained outside, independent financial advisors like Goldman Sachs who themselves, or through outside fund managers they identify, handle the majority of our stock investments. Goldman Sachs or these independent fund managers bought and sold individual stocks without consulting with us. In addition, we continue to own three specific stocks I earned as compensation for my service as a board member of those companies before I joined the U.S. Senate in traditional brokerage accounts. Right now, I remain focused on helping Georgians recover from the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and getting America back to work.”

The exchange traded funds Perdue invested in during April include SPDR S&P 500 Trust, Alerian MLP, Ishares Russell 2000, Vanguard Developed Markets, Vanguard Real Estate Index, Vanguard S&P 500 Index. The mutual funds they are invested in include Goldman Sachs Growth Strategy Portfolio Class P, Goldman Sachs High Yield Floating Rate Fund Class P, and Corporate Credit Investment Strategies LLC.

According to Perdue's financial reports, during the first few months of 2020 his account had significantly more purchases than sales. His spokesperson noted that there was no massive sell-off or profiting from the COVID-19 pandemic. For January 2020, Perdue reported 17 sales totaling $1.48 million and 11 purchases totaling $110,000. For February 2020 he reported 42 sales totaling $286,000 and 40 purchases totaling $364,000; and in March he reported 34 sales totaling $367,000 and 78 purchases totaling $1.35 million.

Yeah, ok. The real reason is Perdue needs to get his shit together because he sees the writing on the wall:

Sen. David Perdue, a Georgia Republican up for reelection and a close Trump confidant, issued a blunt warning to GOP activists during an off-the-record conference call this week: Democrats are in position to turn his state blue and take the Senate.

“Here's the reality: The state of Georgia is in play,” Perdue said Monday, according to an audio recording of a call with “Women for Trump” obtained by CNN. “The Democrats have made it that way.”
The stark warning from a GOP senator — who is not considered among the most vulnerable Republicans this election cycle — illustrates the fear among Republicans that Democrats' chances of taking back the Senate continue to grow.
Already facing the prospect of defending the Senate with an unpopular Republican president in an election cycle with more seats to defend than to target, Republicans are up against a bevy of well-funded Democratic challengers and are now navigating a public health and economic crisis that has injected deep uncertainty into the national political landscape.
Indeed, the political environment for GOP senators has only become more challenging in the past few months. Republican incumbents in Colorado, Arizona, Maine and North Carolina always knew they would face a tough path to reelection. Now Republicans in more conservative states — Georgia, Iowa, Montana and even Kansas — have realized the same.

Speaking of which, let’s check in on the top Democratic Senate candidates in this race. First off, Jon Ossoff has hit the airwaves:

Civil rights pioneer and Georgia congressman John Lewis’ endorsement of Democratic Senate hopeful Jon Ossoff is the focus of a new television ad from Ossoff’s campaign that begins airing statewide on Tuesday.

Ossoff, a former congressional aide who broke fundraising records during an unsuccessful 2017 run for a metro Atlanta U.S. House seat, faces a handful of other Democrats in a June 9 primary election. The winner will earn a spot taking on Republican Sen. David Perdue, a former business executive and ally of President Donald Trump, as he seeks a second term in November.

“I’ve known Jon for many, many years,” Lewis says in the ad. “He will fight for our values. Friends, I’m calling on you to support Jon Ossoff and send Donald Trump a message he will never forget.”

Lewis, who is seeking an 18th term of his own despite a pancreatic cancer diagnosis announced late last year, is the last survivor of the Big Six civil rights activists once led by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. Ossoff opened his bid for the seat with Lewis’ endorsement in September.

And has been picking up endorsements:

Former U.S. Senate candidate Ted Terry endorsed Jon Ossoff’s campaign to unseat Republican David Perdue on Wednesday, praising his pledge to “lead an all-out attack on political corruption” and pursue left-leaning policies.

The former Clarkston mayor, who dropped out of the race in January, built a high profile among Georgia progressives and was one of the most prominent local supporters of Vermont U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders’ presidential bid.

“I’ve worked with Jon to advance a progressive agenda in Georgia for over a decade, and I know Jon has the experience, vision, and values to move Georgia forward,” said Terry, who is now running for a DeKalb County commission seat.

And here’s another recent endorsement:

Muscogee County Municipal Court Clerk Vivian Bishop is endorsing Democrat Jon Ossoff, who is running for Senator Davis Perdue’s seat.
Bishop and Ossoff said they were introduced to each other by congressman and civil rights leader, John Lewis, several years ago.
“I've been in elected office for 28 years,” said Bishop. “The people of Columbus have been very kind to me. They've been very supportive. They know that I believe in strong leadership and they are looking for strong leadership and we know that Jon is our candidate.”
“With this current public health crisis, we need to come together and make sure that everyone can afford the healthcare that they need, that everyone can afford the medicine that they need,” said Ossoff. “I'm honored by Vivian's support and excited to work with her and serve the people.”

And this was a good response:

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Next up, Teresa Tomlinson is also pushing her ad campaign:

Former Columbus, Ga. Mayor Teresa Tomlinson began running television ads Tuesday.  According to her campaign, the $50,000 ad buy is concentrated in metro Atlanta.

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Picking up big endorsements:

Former Columbus mayor and Democratic Senate candidate, Teresa Tomlinson, announced a big endorsement Wednesday.
Former U.S. Homeland Security secretary, Jeh Johnson, is throwing his support behind Tomlinson in the Democratic primary.
Johnson called Tomlinson a “get-it-done public official” who understands public safety.

And I like this response as well:

U.S. Senate candidate Teresa Tomlinson spoke out on the killing of Ahmaud Arbery today. Wanda Cooper, Arbery’s mother, told CNN Sunday that when police notified her of her son’s death, she was told her son was involved in a burglary and that there was a confrontation between her son and the homeowner and a struggle over a gun.

“He was not armed,” Cooper said. She said she never worried about him jogging because he wasn’t bothering anyone.

“I am joining with the family of Ahmaud Arbery, their Attorney Lee Meritt, the NAACP, ACLU, NAN and numerous other civil rights groups that are calling on the DOJ to investigate the killing and apparent violation of the fundamental constitutional civil rights of Ahmaud Arbery, an unarmed black man jogging in Brunswick, Georgia on February 23, 2020,” said Tomlinson in a statement.” I further join the chorus of justice-loving people calling on the Glynn County District Attorney to immediately issue arrest warrants for the known perpetrators.”

I don’t have a lot of new updates on Sarah Riggs Amico but she did partake in this:

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You can rewatch it here:

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And don’t forget this:

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— Sarah Riggs Amico (@SarahRiggsAmico) May 9, 2020

Click below to donate and get involved with Georgia Democrat of your choice:

Jon Ossoff

Teresa Tomlinson

Sarah Riggs Amico

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