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Insider Trading: Stewart v. Bush

March 14, 2004

(archived broadcast )
Martha Stewart v. George W. Bush: Who is the bigger crook?
Martha Stewart’s conviction this week of making false statements and obstruction of justice stemming from allegations of insider trading was all over the news last week. But extremely few Americans are aware of Bush’s insider trading at Harken Energy in 1990 when his father was President.

As a director at Harken, Bush received detailed information of massive losses at the company just before he sold his stock. Six months later, the stock had dropped to half its value, with Bush avoiding a loss of more than $400,000. (Stewart’s insider deal avoided her a loss of $50,000).
Then Bush further violated the law by failing to disclose his stock sale until more than eight months later, which he did in a form that was conveniently undated. The SEC, under the control of his father the President, opened an investigation but eventually decided not to prosecute. They did make clear that Bush was “in no way . . . exonerated” and that future enforcement action might be taken.
Bush’s explanations for the sale and the late filing of Harken stock have been inconsistent and contradictory. Why was Martha Stewart prosecuted for her false statements on insider trading and the son of the President let go?
Join us this Sunday as we give you all the facts of both cases and let you decide.
For a terrific summary of all the facts you’d ever want to know about Bush insider trading at Harken Energy, click here.

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