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NYT: Hillary Confidante Counseled State Department on Behalf of Business Interests While Employed By Clinton Foundation

Sidney Blumenthal / AP
• May 18, 2015 5:16 pm

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Longtime Clinton confidante Sid Blumenthal advised Hillary Clinton’s State Department during the conflict in Libya, the New York Times reports. Blumenthal’s unofficial involvement in State Department affairs, which occurred while he was on the payroll of various Clinton-related organizations, was more extensive than previously known, and is likely to earn him a subpoena from the Republican-led congressional committee investigating the Benghazi attacks:

While advising Mrs. Clinton on Libya, Mr. Blumenthal, who had been barred from a State Department job by aides to President Obama, was also employed by her family’s philanthropy, the Clinton Foundation, to help with research, "message guidance" and planning of commemorative events, according to foundation officials. During the same period, he also worked on and off as a paid consultant to Media Matters and American Bridge, organizations that helped lay the groundwork for Mrs. Clinton’s 2016 campaign.

Much of the Libya intelligence that Mr. Blumenthal passed on to Mrs. Clinton appears to have come from a group of business associates he was advising as they sought to win contracts from the Libyan transitional government. The venture, which was ultimately unsuccessful, involved other Clinton friends, a private military contractor and one former C.I.A. spy seeking to get in on the ground floor of the new Libyan economy.

The projects — creating floating hospitals to treat Libya’s war wounded and temporary housing for displaced people, and building schools — would have required State Department permits, but floundered before the business partners could seek official approval.