Garcia: Boeing stock sale not tied to privileged information 

Rep. Mike Garcia, R-Santa Clarita, speaks to the crowd gathered for the second annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Unity Walk at Central Park in Saugus, Calif., on Monday, Jan. 16, 2023. Chris Torres/The Signal
Rep. Mike Garcia, R-Santa Clarita, speaks to the crowd gathered for the second annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Unity Walk at Central Park in Saugus, Calif., on Monday, Jan. 16, 2023. Chris Torres/The Signal
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Congressman’s office says media reports on 3-year-old sale contain ‘blatant lies’ 

The office of Rep. Mike Garcia, R-Santa Clarita, issued a statement Friday calling published media reports speculating that Garcia intentionally delayed the disclosure of his 2020 sale of Boeing stock “blatant lies.” 

Garcia sold up to $50,000 in Boeing shares in August 2020 while he was a member of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure ahead of an investigative report on the Boeing 737 Max airliner released by the committee in September 2020.  

The story, which was first reported in July 2021 by americanjournalnews.com, was resurrected this week by The Daily Beast and subsequently picked up by other media outlets. 

Representatives for Garcia said Friday that he, as a member of the minority party, was not aware of the committee’s Boeing report until it was released, and that he also engaged in no meetings or hearings on the subject.  

“This makes claims of insider trading an impossibility. In short, he was not privy to any information that wasn’t public domain,” said a statement from the congressman’s office. 

“This is a desperate attempt to resurrect a previously failed partisan attack — three years after the fact — from a hyper-partisan publication,” read a statement from Liam Anderson, Garcia’s communications director. “The fact is, Congressman Garcia started to divest from companies as soon as he was elected in May 2020, and, as a newly elected member of the minority, he had no insight to the Democrat-written and controlled report in reference.” 

The Daily Beast story quoted multiple activists, watchdogs and legal observers who criticized Garcia’s August 2020 sale of Boeing stock and his failure to report it on time. Among them was Jordan Libowitz, communications director for Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington:  

“This situation appears to be the exact kind of fear that people talk about where members of Congress are benefiting from their position,” Libowitz speculated in the Daily Beast article. “He knew bad news was coming for Boeing and was in a particular place to know and he made a move on that.” 

Boeing came under fire after its 737 Max airliner was involved in two crashes that killed 346 people in 2018 and 2019. The House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure conducted a series of hearings looking into the aircraft in 2019 before releasing the report in 2020. 

The Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge (STOCK) Act of 2012 mandates that members of Congress disclose all purchases and sales of stocks during their time in office. 

Garcia filed the paperwork to disclose the August 2020 share sales on Nov. 23, 2020, about two months after the 45-day reporting window and two weeks after the general election, which Garcia won by 333 votes. 

According to House reporting documents obtained by The Signal, Garcia sold multiple Boeing shares in June 2020 totaling up to $65,000, along with stocks in other companies. He then sold more Boeing shares on Aug. 10 and Nov. 13, 2020, each up to $50,000. 

The earlier sales of Boeing stock were reported within the 45-day window. The two June 2020 sales of Boeing stock were reported on June 17, 2020. 

Garcia was appointed to the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure in July 2020. The committee’s hearings on the 737 Max were held in 2019, before Garcia was elected to Congress. The committee’s report, according to its cover sheet, was prepared by “majority staff of the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.” 

A member of Garcia’s office said that Garcia was originally unaware of missing a disclosure deadline in 2020 but, upon learning of the mistake, immediately filed the disclosure.  

Such errors are not uncommon, according to Business Insider, which reported in January that at least 78 members of Congress from both major parties had “recently” made similar reporting errors as of that time.  

“Congressman Garcia immediately rectified the accidental late filing,” reads the statement from Anderson. “Everything is filed and everything is public. People are sick of these blatant lies and see right through these lazy attempts to smear their political opponents.” 

Garcia sold nearly all of his stock shares, except for some in Tesla, by 2021, according to his May 2022 Financial Disclosure Report. 

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