A U.S. judge on Friday directed the House Ways and Means Committee and a staffer to appear at a July 1 hearing to address their alleged refusal to respond to U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission subpoenas as part of an insider trading probe.
The order by U.S. District Judge Paul Gardephe in New York covers both the committee and Brian Sutter, staff director for its healthcare subcommittee and came at the SEC’s request.
The SEC said it is examining whether material nonpublic information concerning an April 1, 2013 announcement by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services of 2014 reimbursement rates for a Medicare program was leaked improperly, and whether anyone traded on that information…
According to the SEC, the House committee has resisted the subpoenas, in part by arguing that the U.S. Constitution shields lawmakers from having to testify or turn over documents…
As usual, the creeps in Congress think they are above the law.
In court papers on Friday, the SEC said it was looking into an email that a lobbyist at the law firm Greenberg Traurig sent to broker-dealer Height Securities regarding a deal struck in Congress about the Medicare rates.
It said that email was 70 minutes before CMS announced the rates after U.S. markets closed, and about 30 minutes before Height issued a report suggesting that the change could help companies such as Humana and Health Net.
The SEC said the share prices of both companies jumped after the report, with Humana’s rising 7 percent in the last 15 minutes of trading.
Sutter, meanwhile, had on the day of the announcement been emailing the Greenberg Traurig lobbyist about the termination of a client from the Medicare program, the SEC said. Both then spoke on the phone for three minutes, which was 10 minutes before the lobbyist emailed Height, the SEC said.
I would love to see US Marshalls march into the House of Representatives and handcuff some of these sleazy bastards and cart ’em away for refusal to answer a subpoena. Ordinary mortals, plain old American citizens don’t get to behave like monarchs. Congress-critters consider it as much of a right as being able to lie unchallenged.