For several months in 2012, Clinton’s final year as secretary of state, Raytheon, the leading defense contractor, hired Podesta’s sister-in-law, Heather Podesta, as a lobbyist, federal records show…
On the LD-2 lobbying disclosure form completed by her company, Heather Podesta + Partners, LLC, in July 2012, the veteran lawyer and Democratic fundraiser listed in the space provided for a description of her lobbying activities, “Engaged the Executive Branch on the economic benefits of foreign military sales.” In the space requesting the specific locales of her lobbying, Ms. Podesta listed the White House and the State Department.
Heather Podesta earned $100,000 for her lobbying activity on behalf of Raytheon. And Fox News reports Raytheon was a primary contractor in “at least seventeen foreign military sales in 2012, worth an estimated total of $26 billion.” But her contract with the company ended once Hillary Clinton left office:
After Clinton stepped down as secretary of state in February 2013, Raytheon discontinued the services of Heather Podesta + Partners, and ceased its use of DLA Piper at State.
While experts do not believe any laws were broken, the affair illustrates how Washington worked in the first Obama term, and particularly at the Clinton State Department.
Heather Podesta divorced John’s brother Tony Podesta in 2014. In the divorce proceedings Tony argued that her success was the result of his tutelage and connections. From the Washington Post:
In the filing, Tony Podesta makes the case that he is responsible for his wife’s current success by schooling her in the lobbying business and introducing her to his network of high-profile contacts. The filing claims that her salary before their marriage was $55,000, and that she now earns “many millions” annually. “Ms. Podesta’s career has risen meteorically since the parties’ marriage, with Mr. Podesta’s assistance and connections,” according to the document.
Heather Podesta didn’t see it that way but the couple eventually reached a divorce settlement before it went to a potentially embarrassing trial.