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GOP Senate Intelligence chair dumped up to $1.6 million in stock just before market started crashing

2 min read

Daily Kos’ Kerry Eleveld reported on Part I of this outrage earlier today.

In sum, Republican Sen. Richard Burr, chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee, warned a group of wealthy insiders that the coronavirus would be a big, serious deal — even as Donald Trump was downplaying the danger at every turn.

Well, it gets worse.

Even as he was reassuring the public that COVID-19 was no biggie, he was dumping stock faster than 45 fills his Lex Luthor Underoos.

ProPublica:

Soon after he offered public assurances that the government was ready to battle the coronavirus, the powerful chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, Richard Burr, sold off a significant percentage of his stocks, unloading between $582,029 and $1.56 million of his holdings on Feb. 13 in 29 separate transactions.

As the head of the intelligence committee, Burr, a North Carolina Republican, has access to the government’s most highly classified information about threats to America’s security. His committee was receiving daily coronavirus briefings around this time, according to a Reuters story.

A week after Burr’s sales, the stock market began a sharp decline and has lost about 30% since.

On Thursday, Burr came under fire after NPR obtained a secret recording from Feb. 27, in which the lawmaker gave a VIP group at an exclusive social club a much more dire preview of the economic impact of the coronavirus than what he had told the public.

Even worse, some of the stocks Burr sold — such as Wyndham Hotels and Resorts and Extended Stay America — have predictably been pummeled in the wake of the coronavirus’ spread.

Hmm, that sounds a little like, I don’t know, insider trading.

Must be nice to have a jump on the financial carnage. Sounds like he’s a good person to know if you want to be a greedy sow.

UPDATE: Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has called on Burr to resign:

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At the very least he should be forced to resign.

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