Bill Clinton Defends Foreign Donations to Clinton Foundation
See if you can spot what is wrong with this picture!
Conflicts of Interest?
We told you earlier about how during her term as Secretary of State, the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Foundation did not accept donations from foreign governments. Now, with Hillary as a pseudo-candidate for president, the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Foundation has started to accept donations from foreign governments.
According to The Wall Street Journal, the foundation has already received funding from the United Arab Emirates (somewhere between $1 million and $5 million, the Clinton’s only report ranges), Saudi Arabia (total between $10 million and $25 million), and others.
Some people raised concerns about the Clinton Foundation receiving such generous donations. Was the UAE and Saudi money simply because those nations believe in the good work the Foundation does, or were the donations a conflict of interest, an advance pay off, given that Clinton Foundation principle Hillary intends to be the next president?
Because those questions can be so hard to parse out, Bill Clinton now explains.
“My theory about all this is, disclose everything,” Clinton said at an event sponsored by the Clinton Global Initiative University. “And then let people make their judgments.” Clinton did not explain how his “disclose everything” mantra seems in conflict with the foreign donations coming to light only after extensive media reporting, and how the full details still remain hidden because the Foundation refuses to disclose any further details, such as precise numbers.
“I believe we have done a lot more good than harm,” he added. “And I believe this is a good thing.”
“For example, the UAE gave us money,” Clinton said. “Do we agree with everything they do? No. But they are helping us fight ISIS and they built a great university with NYU, open to people around the world… Do I agree with all the foreign policy of Saudi Arabia? No.”
Bill did not mention how the NYU UAE project is mired in accusations of near-slave labor conditions for some of its workers, or how NYU has bowed to the UAE to “scrub” its curriculum and campus policies to match local anti-democractic political beliefs.
He also forgot to mention how the UAE pulled out of America’s ISIS bombing campaign after that Jordanian pilot was captured in December (the UAE has since re-entered the campaign in a limited way.)
What is Wrong with This Picture
But we began with a test: See if you can spot what is wrong with this picture. Got it yet?
Bill never answered the key question regarding the foreign donations. Is it ethical for the Clinton Foundation to accept such generous foreign donations as Hillary prepares to run for president? Is there a conflict of interest? Why or why not?
And there is the heart of the matter. When things begin to unfold around a Clinton, the “answers” and explanations do not seem to match the questions. It is almost as if we are meant to be… distracted.
BONUS: Who was interviewing Bill in the interaction above? Why didn’t the interviewer probe a bit, maybe ask a follow-up question or two? The guy asking Bill about all this was Larry Wilmore, host of Comedy Central’s “The Nightly Show.” Wilmore’s show purports to skewer politicians and pass satirical judgement on the news. Whether anyone likes it or not, a very large number of Americans now get their “news” from Comedy Central’s faux news shows. No conflict of interest evident there, with him pitching softballs at Clinton, right?