Hillary Clinton’s aide Cheryl Mills orchestrated a deal which resulted in up to $500,000 in speaking fees for Bill Clinton, shown in a report by The Daily Caller News Foundation. Mills did this while working as Hillary Clinton’s Chief of Staff, meaning that she was a State Department employee -- not an employee of the Clinton Foundation.
Mills wove a complicated web of relationships spanning multiple organizations and countries. Muhammad Yunus, founder of microlending giant Grameen Bank, is a major player here. Yunus is a longtime Clinton friend and Clinton Foundation donor. He has since been forced out of his management role at Grameen Bank due to allegations of embezzlement, loan sharking, and misrepresenting products sold by Grameen companies. Hillary used an official State Department trip to Bangladesh to speak on behalf of Yunus.
Mills arranged for an Abu Dhabi oil company to donate to Grameen Bank, which was spearheaded (at the time) by Yunus. The head of the Abu Dhabi oil company was in Scotland at the time, and in addition to donating to Grameen Bank, he paid hefty speaking fees for Bill Clinton to appear at a formal dinner fundraiser for the bank. The Clinton friend gets a large sum of money, and so do the Clintons. The paying customer, the oil company, gets a Bill Clinton speech.
This is not an isolated incident of donors calling in favors from the Clintons. A wealthy Nigerian-Lebanese businessman (and high-dollar donor to the Clinton Foundation) requested a meeting with a State Department bigwig, and Mills said she would arrange a meeting with the acting assistant secretary of state for near eastern affairs. The official denies that any meeting took place. To resolve this discrepancy, we, the American people, should be able to read State Department emails, and see the calendars of State Department officials. Team Hillary has not only tried to destroy her emails and those of her aides, but they’ve provided only partial schedules which omit meetings between Mrs. Clinton and Foundation staff and donors.
This pay-to-play system is not only unethical, it may also be entirely illegal. It's illegal to use public office for personal enrichment, and it's illegal to use donations from foreign entities to fund a political campaign. The FBI asked the DOJ for permission to do its job -- to look into what went on at the Clinton Foundation. The DOJ refused to allow the FBI to investigate. We have seen this play out over and over again: Hillary will claim she knew nothing about what was going on. She’ll feign disgust, pocket the cash, and make one of her lackeys take the fall. She’ll play the victim, when she was really the perpetrator.
The Clintons have decades of experience in unethical dealings with their donors. In the late 1990s, President and Mrs. Clinton allowed over 800 high-dollar donors to stay overnight in the Lincoln Bedroom at the White House. Renting out a room in the country’s most famous residence is akin to selling access to the president, not to mention a commercialization of history that critics panned as tacky and greedy.
Donald Trump has already used this latest evidence of Clinton corruption to slam Hillary’s record as Secretary of State. He called the scheme “pay to play” at his rally on Wednesday. Americans distrust Hillary Clinton, and millennials distrust her the most, with only 32 percent saying she’s “honest and trustworthy.” (That’s 9 percent less than our baby boomer parents.) Donald Trump fares even worse, with only 30 percent of voters under 40 calling him “honest and trustworthy.”
Now that a Clinton presidency is 85 percent likely, according to the polling aggregators at FiveThirtyEight, it remains to be seen if and how Hillary Clinton will use the presidency for personal gain.