An investigation by Politico has found Bill Clinton used federal money intended to support former presidents to boost the salaries of Clinton Foundation employees, including top Hillary Clinton aides Huma Abedin and Cheryl Mills, as well as set up and maintain the former Secretary of State’s now-infamous private email server.
Bill Clinton's staff used a decades-old federal government program, originally created to keep former presidents out of the poorhouse, to subsidize his family’s foundation and an associated business, and to support his wife’s private email server, a POLITICO investigation has found.
Taxpayer cash was used to buy IT equipment — including servers — housed at the Clinton Foundation, and also to supplement the pay and benefits of several aides now at the center of the email and cash-for-access scandals dogging Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.
The cash was funneled through the Former Presidents Act, a General Services Administration program that supports the staff, travel and pensions of former presidents after they leave office. Politico correctly notes that the Clintons’ use of this taxpayer-funded program to help support their foundation and staff isn’t expressly illegal, per say, but adds the new information does “blur the line” between the Clintons’ shady foundation and Bill and Hillary’s government ties.
Politico also adds Bill Clinton requested and received $16 million in allocations under the GSA program – more than any other president in history. The money he requested under the program went to subsidize top Clinton Foundation employees’ six-figure salaries and federal benefits, leaving the Foundation itself off the hook for the bill and further complicating the already-sketchy ties between the Clintons, their Foundation and the federal government.
An analysis of the records provided by GSA, combined with Clinton Foundation tax returns, found that at least 13 of the 22 staffers who have been paid by GSA to work for Clinton’s personal office also worked for the Clinton Foundation.
Meanwhile, the Clintons themselves pulled in millions from exorbitant speaking fees and appearances.
Politico also found one of the Foundation staff who benefited from a taxpayer-subsidized salary was Justin Cooper, an untrained IT guy with no security clearance who helped set up Hillary Clinton’s private email server, on which she stored tens of thousands of State Department emails, some of which contained classified information.
Another employee, Doug Band, helped Cooper launch a profitable consulting business while pulling in as much as $111,000 annually as an official for the Clinton Foundation. Despite this, Band still drew from the GSA payroll from 2011 until 2013, Politico reported.
Politico's report comes just two weeks after news broke that Obama's Justice Department had ignored calls from the FBI to investigate potential corrupt ties between Clinton's State Department and the Clinton Foundation, after three separate FBI field officies found evidence of a pay-to-play relationship in which top Clinton donors received special access to Cinton and State Department officials while the former First Lady was Secretary of State.