With New York Republican Rep. Chris Collins already arrested on security fraud charges, and Houston Republican Rep. John Culberson implicated in suspiciously similar activities, it was just a matter of time before another dirtbag Republican lawmaker would find himself outed for super dubious behavior. Both men seem to have bought a bunch of stock in an obscure Australian company, Innate. The company had an immune therapy drug that it was working through trials. Collins and his son had a lot of stock in that company. They all sold off their stock just days before Innate’s drug failed a major trial. Well, add another Republican to the scoundrel’s fire! Meet Missouri’s own Republican Rep Billy Long. You might remember the Trump-supporting Long for his swamp creature donor list; but today The Daily Beast reports that Rep. Long, like Rep. Collins has an intimate relationship with this obscure Innate stock.
As The Daily Beast reported last year, Collins authored four bills that would likely have benefited the company. Two of them, separate versions of the same bill introduced in the 114th and 115th Congresses, had just one cosponsor: Rep. Billy Long (R-MO), a member of the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health, which has oversight over the Food and Drug Administration. While no one has accused him of any legal wrongdoing, Long also held stock in Innate. Long signed on to both pieces of legislation the day they were introduced. The first was filed in December 2016, and didn’t make it out of subcommittee before the session ended.
Then in January, Long bought between $15,000 and $50,000 in Innate stock, apparently as part of a Fidelity retirement account. In July, Collins once again introduced his bill, which would have expedited FDA approvals for treatments such as Innate’s, and Long was once again an immediate co-sponsor.
What’s ol’ Billy boy’s people got to say for themselves?
Hannah Smith, press secretary for Long, said, “Congressman Long did not learn of Innate Immunotherapeutics through a colleague, but rather when it became a daily topic on the nightly news in January of 2017.”
That means that they cannot get Rep. Long’s brokerage to say they told him to buy the stock—Long had to come up with the idea all by his self. If it walks like a corrupt duck and quacks like a corrupt duck …