Hey, it happens. A few coins slip out of the pocket and into the sofa, a check or two gets left on the desk … or a few million reported as revenue turn out to be undeclared foreign and corporate donations.
Just remember that one of the principals at the Clinton Foundation wants to be in charge of the IRS, among other things:
The Clinton Foundation reported Thursday that it has received as much as $26.4 million in previously undisclosed payments from major corporations, universities, foreign sources and other groups.
The disclosure came as the foundation faced questions over whether it fully complied with a 2008 ethics agreement to reveal its donors and whether any of its funding sources present conflicts of interest for Hillary Rodham Clinton as she begins her presidential campaign.
The money was paid as fees for speeches by Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton. Foundation officials said the funds were tallied internally as “revenue” rather than donations, which is why they had not been included in the public listings of its contributors published as part of the 2008 agreement.
According to the new information, the Clintons have delivered 97 speeches to benefit the charity since 2002. Colleges and universities sponsored more than two dozen of these speeches, along with U.S. and overseas corporations and at least one foreign government, Thailand.
Citibank, a Chinese energy company, the government of Thailand, and other entities all kicked into the Clinton Foundation without having their donations disclosed. Instead of listing them as donations, the Clintons instead listed the big paydays as revenue, which they didn’t disclose as part of their agreement with the Obama administration to keep the Clinton Foundation in operation.
There are a couple of notable entries on the new set of books released by the foundation. Carlos Slim, the Mexican billionaire who owns a considerable interest in the New York Times, paid Hillary Clinton as much as $500K for one speech through his Telmex Foundation. Qatar First Bank paid Bill Clinton a similar amount. The government of Qatar also arranged for another Bill payday in the same range at the Brookings Institution for the US Islamic World Forum.
Needless to say, the two instances of government involvement in the Clinton Foundation are more than problematic during the tenure of Hillary at State, especially Qatar. Nominally a US ally, Qatar was until last summer the main diplomatic partner of Hamas, classified as a terrorist organization by State. What is the Secretary of State doing by accepting cash from Qatar through a spouse while representing the US as its top diplomat in that highly sensitive and precarious relationship? What would Israel (among others in the region) think about the direction of US policy while someone who’s getting money indirectly from the then-partner of Hamas?
In a sane world, this kind of corruption would be disqualifying, and the media would demand immediate answers from the politician at the center of it. Thus far, we haven’t seen much evidence of sanity among Democrats or the national media.