Ethics Watchdogs Once Again Circling Clinton Foundation

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Evan El-Amin / Shutterstock.com
Evan El-Amin / Shutterstock.com

Some ethical watchdogs are circling around the Clinton Foundation due to a fast decline in donor cash. They believe this raises some red flags pointing to political corruption.

Some recent financial disclosures reveal a significant drop in contributions to the Foundation in the years following the Clintons’ fall from the positions of power inside of the Democratic Party.

In 2020, the Clinton Foundation received approximately $16.3 million in contributions. In 2009, the year after Hillary was appointed as Secretary of State, the Foundation received almost $250 million. That is a decrease of almost 94%…yikes.

Scott Amey, the General Counsel for the Project on Government Oversight (POGO), said, “For years, the Clinton Foundation raised ethical concerns and blurred lines between the foundation, private entities, and the State Department.” The POGO is a nonpartisan independent watchdog organization that focuses on government corruption.

Scott Amey said that money poured into the Foundation when Hillary Clinton was a senior official and a candidate for president. He made the connection that donors felt like they had access to Hillary’s position. But when she lost the election in 2016, it became apparent that donors believed they were creating access to the future president.

For the past two decades, the Clinton Foundation has faced the spotlight and scrutiny over what looked like unethical behavior. The Associated Press made a report in 2016 that revealed at least 85 of the 154 people with private interests who met with Hillary Clinton while she was Secretary of State donated to her Foundation. Those 85 donors gave approximately $156 million.

And while she served as Secretary of State, the Clinton Foundation received tens of millions of dollars from seven foreign governments. Some of these nations were Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman, and Algeria. This is also according to a report in The Washington Post.

Hillary received her nomination as Secretary of State with a condition that only foreign governments who had previously donated to the Foundation could continue to donate. But the Clinton Foundation accepted a $500,000 donation from the Algerian government in 2010. This was a clear violation of the agreement with the State Department’s ethics office. At the time of the donation, the Algerian government was engaging in human rights violations. None of this is good news for the Clintons.

The New York Times published an article in 2015 that described an investigation into the 2013 purchase of Canada’s Uranium One by Russia’s atomic energy agency Rosatom. For years, Russia had gained more and more control of Uranium One, which had a major portion of the global uranium supply chain. The chairman of this company made four donations totaling $2.35 million to the Clinton Foundation. And these donations were not publicly disclosed by the Foundation. After Russia announced their purchase of a majority stake in Uranium One, Bill Clinton was paid $500,000 after speaking at a Kremlin-linked Russian investment bank.

POGO is now calling for an ethics reform package that will cover all three branches of government. They want Congress to cut off conflicts of interest and restrict special access. It is also important to attempt to prevent trading on insider knowledge and also stop politicians from making deals that result in personal gain, as many Dems are known to do.

Amey said, “Recent surveys show that corruption is a major public concern, but with the foxes guarding the henhouse, I’m unsure who will step forward to fix the problem.”

Anna Massoglia is an Investigative Researcher at Open Secrets, a not-for-profit transparency organization that keeps track of money and politicians. She has been focused on the decline in cash flow at the Clinton Foundation since 2016.

The recent survey conducted by POGO showed 70% of the participants who were likely voters in 2022 were “very” or “extremely” concerned about corruption in the federal government. And 90% of those surveyed believe that federal government corruption costs the taxpayer a great deal of money.

Will this new scrutiny finally bring to light decades of corruption that has been alleged regarding the Clintons’ uses of political power?