Americans have to be asking themselves if they really have the stomach for ten more years of this.
On Thursday, a variety of major scandals involving Clinton’s alleged penchant for selling her influence as America’s chief diplomat in exchange for high-dollar donations to her family’s foundation exploded.
As Jazz summarized, the first scandal involved the allegation in The New York Times that Clinton’s State Department approved of the transfer of 20 percent of America’s uranium production capacity and facilitated the Russian goal of cornering the global uranium market. While State was reviewing this dubious deal, the Clinton Foundation accepted a $2.35 million donation from the uranium company that would be transferred into Russian control.
This is just the latest allegation regarding the Clinton Foundation’s penchant for accepting donations from nations or individuals who later have seen their interests looked after by the State Department.
According to Newsweek, Ukrainian financier and prolific Clinton Foundation contributor Victor Pinchuk was involved in a variety of deals which provided Iran with materials critical to the production of oil and gas in violation of international sanctions against that country. Those deals were reportedly concluded in 2011 and 2012, while Clinton still served as the secretary of state.
That allegation is strikingly similar to the claim made by International Business Times reporters who determined that a well-timed donation to the Clinton Foundation from oil magnate Frank Giustra preceded both Clinton and Barack Obama’s decision to drop their objection to a Colombian trade deal. Few saw it as simply a coincidence that Giustra’s Colombia-based firm, Pacific Rubiales, benefited from that arrangement.
There is no smoking gun, but the preponderance of evidence now clearly suggests that the Clintons were not shy about helping their friends from their position of authority, so long as those friends contributed to the family’s charitable foundation.
Today, Reuters has another Clinton-related bombshell that will not be greeted warmly in Whitehaven. According to their exclusive report, the Clinton’s charities are going to refile their tax returns after the news outlet “found errors in who they reported donations from governments.” What’s more, the Clinton Foundation may reportedly conduct an internal audit of some of their returns in order to identify further errors.
The errors, which have not been previously reported, appear on the form 990s that all non-profit organizations must file annually with the Internal Revenue Service to maintain their tax-exempt status. A charity must show copies of the forms to anyone who wants to see them to understand how the charity raises and spends money.
The unsettled numbers on the tax returns are not evidence of wrongdoing but tend to undermine the 990s role as a form of public accountability, experts in charity law and transparency advocates interview told Reuters.
“If those numbers keep changing – well, actually, we spent this on this, not that on that – it really defeats the purpose,” said Bill Allison, a senior fellow at the Sunlight Foundation, a government transparency advocacy group.
There has been some speculation that the general public is either uninterested in all this or that it is simply too complicated for the voting public to understand. While it is possible, neither of those concerns seems especially well-founded for the moment. The most damaging scandalous allegations in politics are those that are easiest to summarize and which appear to confirm a preexisting narrative. The Clinton Foundation scandals can be easily summarized – American influence for sale – and they also highlight Clinton’s penchant for secrecy and corruption.