Democrats want an investigation into the healthcare stock dealings of the nominee for HHS secretary, Rep. Tom Price, during his time in Congress.
The Wall Street Journal reported last month that Price traded more than $300,000 in shares of about 40 health-related companies in the past four years while debating legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives that would affect those companies.
Senate Democrats said in a news conference Thursday morning that they have no evidence of insider information or illegal dealings, but want the House Office of Congressional Ethics to investigate. Republicans tried to gut the OCE in a surprise vote Monday night but have backtracked after outcry from voters.
President-elect Donald Trump's team was quick to respond.
“Hypocrisy is apparently alive and well this morning in Washington," Trump transition spokesman Phil Blando said in a statement, adding that the same questions should be asked of Sens. Tom Carper (D-Del.), Mark Warner (D-Va.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), "who own and have traded hundreds of thousands of dollars in pharmaceutical and health insurance company stocks."
"Today's stunt is simply an effort to deflect attention away from Obamacare's dismal record, including reduced choices and $700 billion in Medicare cuts,” he added.
Democrats have strongly opposed Price's nomination because of his support for repealing the Affordable Care Act as well as his arguments against the CMS Innovation Center and his support for privatizing Medicare.
The powerful Republican orthopedic surgeon from Georgia served as chairman of the House Budget Committee and was also on the Health Subcommittee of the House Ways and Means Committee.