Even Jared Polis's nominal allies won't defend his insider trading of healthcare companies during the Obamacare debate. Today, in The Colorado Observer, Melanie Sloan of left-wing Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) said that Polis's insider trading "seems inappropriate."
From The Colorado Observer's Mark Stricherz:
While members of the executive branch are required to divest their holdings in companies their job might affect, members of Congress are not similarly bound. One such member is Rep. Jared Polis (D-Boulder) whose multi-million dollar investments in a health care company in 2009 received fresh new criticism from congressional watchdogs.
“The notion of lawmakers buying or selling stock in companies that are affected by legislation they’re overseeing is problematic,” Viveca Novak, editorial and communications director for the Center for Responsive Politics, said in an interview.
“It seems inappropriate,” Melanie Sloan, executive director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, said in an interview. [Peak emphasis]
A Polis spokesperson did not respond to a request for comment.
Considering Polis was part of the group that helped fund CREW's Colorado affiliate, Colorado Ethics Watch (CEW), that shot across the bow from Melanie Sloan of CREW has got to sting.
As we've noted before the tag of corruption is one of the top campaign killers in American politics.
Polis has tried to deny anything inappropriate happened. But if left wing allies are willing to take a shot, Polis's excuses are not going to hold up over time.
The reason Polis is taking incoming fire even from the left — this:
As Congress considered the Affordable Care Act, Polis bought between $7 million and $35 million in equity in a privately held company, Bridgehealth International. As a medical tourism business, Bridgehealth stood to benefit financially from an increased pool of customers seeking to reduce their health-care costs.
Polis made seven separate investments in Bridgehealth in 2009. Several of his purchases coincided with key advances in the health-care bill.
On March 5, President Obama held a health summit at the White House with key health care leaders; on March 9, Polis purchased $1 million to $5 million in equity in Bridgehealth. On July 17, the Education and Labor Committee passed the health-care measure; on September 4, Polis bought between $1 million and $5 million in equity in Bridgehealth.