Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R-Ga.) sold stocks worth millions of dollars shortly after senators received a private briefing on the novel coronavirus, the global pandemic that in subsequent weeks caused U.S. equity markets to plunge, the Daily Beast reported.
The news came just hours after similar reports about Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.). Like the Georgia lawmaker, Burr had publicly insisted that the country was prepared to handle the outbreak, and calls for both to resign poured in overnight from figures across the political spectrum.
On Jan. 24, Loeffler and her colleagues on the Senate Health Committee attended a private briefing from administration officials on the public health threat posed by the virus, according to the Daily Beast.
On the same day, she reported the first sale of stocks jointly owned by her and her husband, the chairman of the New York Stock Exchange, valued at between $50,001 and $100,000.
In the following weeks, she went on to sell 26 other holdings in companies like ExxonMobil and Auto Zone, many of which have seen their share price fall significantly as the pandemic wreaks havoc on markets. She did, however, purchase shares in a company that sells teleworking software.
“This is a ridiculous and baseless attack,” Loeffler said on Twitter early on Friday. “I do not make investment decisions for my portfolio. Investment decisions are made by multiple third-party advisers without my or my husband’s knowledge or involvement.”
Burr, chair of the senate’s powerful Intelligence Committee, also sold a significant share of his stocks last month, The Post’s Michelle Ye Hee Lee and John Wagner reported. The value was estimated at between $628,033 and $1.72 million.
According to the New York Times, two other senators, Dianne Feinstein (D-Ca.) and James M. Inhofe (R-Ok.) also sold significant holdings around the same time.
Representatives for Feinstein, Loeffler, and Inhofe did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Post early on Friday, though a spokesman for Feinstein told the Times that she played no role in choosing to sell the stock.