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Report Finds San Diego County Politicians Financially Gaining From Imposing Strict Lockdowns

The report found the Supervisor made some suspicious financial trades that aligned with his COVID-19 policies.

A recent report by the Transparency Foundation, an organization committed to political transparency, found that San Diego County Supervisor Chair Nathan Fletcher and his politician wife financially benefited from strict COVID-19 lockdowns he imposed. 

After being tipped off, the foundation began an investigation into Fletcher’s dealings in late 2021. After receiving a copy of his Form 700, a financial disclosure form for politicians, they discovered he engaged in a number of suspicious stock trades of companies that grew in value as a result of the pandemic. 

Fletcher, and his wife, former CA State Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez, are believed to have invested between $32,000 and $160,000 in the trades. 

A few of the investments include zoom, where he made a 97 percent profit in less than two months, CVS Health, a 53 percent profit, Chemed, where he made a 42 percent profit, among many others. 

Based on the Transparency Foundation’s research on news coverage, meeting minutes, and press materials, Fletcher backed some of the country’s most extreme COVID-19 lockdown measures, sending the economy in a downward spiral and keeping residents at home at every chance he got. 

“Fletcher advocated for substantial limitations on personal freedoms, sweeping lockdowns of wide swaths of the economy, and aggressive condemnations of violators of his county Covid restrictions,” the Transparency Foundation reported. “Fletcher also used San Diego County policy decisions to promote a national narrative favoring more restrictive Covid-19 policies.”

Even more concerning – when the Transparency Foundation utilized the California Public Records Act request to Fletcher’s office to obtain records related to their suspicious activity, Fletcher’s office refused to comply. The foundation has since sued Fletcher over the matter, which they say the records are illegal to withhold. 

Matt Stockton, Treasurer of the Transparency Foundation, said the concerns raise pretty serious concerns about Fletcher’s policy decisions. 

“Stock trades like these can undermine public trust and confidence in their elected officials and Supervisor Nathan Fletcher at least has a lot of explaining to do,” said Stockton.

“We shine a light on how elected officials may be profiting or benefiting personally from policy positions they take while in office — and this kind of allegation has been made across the country against federal, state and local officials who have been particularly aggressive in supporting draconian policies such as lockdowns during the Covid-19 pandemic,” said Stockton. “Our question is if a policy seems extreme or doesn’t follow the science, is there another factor at play like personal or political benefit?” he asked.

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