Clinton Foundation Acknowledges Mistakes as Schweizer Calls for Investigation
The Clinton Foundation's acting CEO, Maura Pally, on Sunday admitted to some mistakes in the organization's listing of donations from foreign governments on its tax forms.
In a statement, Pally wrote, "Our total revenue was accurately reported on each year's form—our error was that government grants were mistakenly combined with other donations. Those same grants have always been properly listed and broken out and available for anyone to see on our audited financial statements, posted on our website."
The statement comes as Clinton Cash author Peter Schweizer has been delineating claims in his forthcoming book, which he says shows a pattern in which the Clinton Foundation received donations from foreign governments before the U.S., under Clinton's leadership as Secretary of State, made favorable decisions in regards to those nations. Pally's statement also acknowledged that those grants were not always properly reported.
"So yes, we made mistakes, as many organizations of our size do, but we are acting quickly to remedy them, and have taken steps to ensure they don't happen in the future," the statement says. "We are committed to operating the Foundation responsibly and effectively to continue the life-changing work that this philanthropy is doing every day."
Schweizer on Sunday appeared on ABC's This Week and on Fox's Fox News Sunday to talk about the claims in the book. In both of those appearances, he likened the situation to issues of insider trading or corruption where it is impossible to find a piece of evidence that clearly demarcates a quid pro quo or an explicit agreement, but the charges can still be proved by showing a pattern of mutually beneficial decisions. On This Week, he used as examples the corruption cases against former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell and the recent charges against New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez. Both were accused (and in McDonnell's case convicted) of accepting gifts in exchange for favors. Throughout the interview, Schweizer referred to McDonnell as "McConnell."
"For example, Governor [McDonnell] down in Virginia, or you look at Senator Menendez, in these cases, you didn't have evidence of a quid pro quo. What you had was funds flowing to elected officials, some of them gifts, some of them campaign contributions and actions that were being taken by those public officials that seemed to benefit the contributors," Schweizer said.
The other example Schweizer used in both interviews was that of insider trading. In insider trading cases, he said, there's rarely a damning e-mail that specifically refers to inside information that will affect the value of a security. Instead, those cases are prosecuted by demonstrating a pattern.
"The way they look at it, they look at a pattern of stock trades," Schweizer said. "If the person has access to that information and then they do a series of well-timed trades. That warrants investigation. I think the same thing applies here."