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November 14, 2011

Part 2 of Congressional Corruption: John F'n Kerry

I was over at the new Breitbart Embassy* in Washington DC to watch the 60 Minutes piece on Throw Them All Out with the author, Peter Schweizer. I heard, from other people, that John F. Kerry had heavily lobbied people to not run the story on him. I'm not sure if he lobbied 60 Minutes itself, but they did omit one of the most interesting scoops Scheweizer dug up.

I can't believe I'm saying this, but Newsweek covers it.

Kerry is one of the wealthiest members of the Senate and heavily invested in the stock market. As the final version of the drug program neared approval—one that didn’t include limits on the price of drugs—brokers for Kerry and his wife were busy trading in Big Pharma. Schweizer found that they completed 111 stock transactions of pharmaceutical companies in 2003, 103 of which were buys.

“They were all great picks,” Schweizer notes. The Kerrys’ capital gains on the transactions were at least $500,000, and as high as $2 million (such information is necessarily imprecise, as the disclosure rules allow members to report their gains in wide ranges). It was instructive to Schweizer that Kerry didn’t try to shape legislation to benefit his portfolio; the apparent key to success was the shaping of trades that anticipated the effect of government policy.

[Some "to be fair" stuff, which I think is irrelevant, omitted.]

...

The Kerry trustees’ impeccable timing in drug company trades was evident again in 2007, when the federal government was weighing whether to discontinue Medicare reimbursement for certain anemia drugs used by cancer patients. When the government announced that it would limit reimbursements, shares in Amgen, one of the drugmakers at issue, dropped 15 percent. Kerry’s wife happened to be an Amgen stockholder but avoided losses; her shares, valued at between $500,000 and $1 million, were unloaded more than a week before the government’s announcement.

As I mentioned to Steven K. Bannon**, every seller implies a buyer. Every time the Kerrys sold stocks at a very high price, given the information they knew was about to impact the stock, someone else bought those stocks at a very high price.

* "The Breitbart Embassy" is what they call their new townhouse in DC. This is not totally a pure name-drop or anything, because I have to explain context, and also, I think they want it known they now have a presence in DC and mean to make trouble.

** The Steven K. Bannon thing is actually a pure name-drop.


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