Politics

Report: Bill Clinton Used Tax Dollars for Foundation, Hillary’s Private Server

AP

Former President Bill Clinton used tax dollars from a decades-old federal program to subsidize the Clinton Foundation and support his wife’s private email server, according to a Politico report published Thursday.

Politico detailed how taxpayer money was used to pay for Clinton Foundation expenses, obtaining the information from the General Services Administration, or GSA, through a Freedom of Information Act request.

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.

This investigation, which is based on records obtained from the General Services Administration through the Freedom of Information Act, does not reveal anything illegal. But it does offer fresh evidence of how the Clintons blurred the line between their non-profit foundation, Hillary Clinton’s State Department, and the business dealings of Bill Clinton and the couple’s aides.

The thousands of pages of newly uncovered records reveal sometimes granular detail about how Bill Clinton’s representatives directed the spending of taxpayer cash allocated by the GSA under the Former President’s Act.

Reporter Kenneth Vogel "pieced together a list of Clinton loyalists" who have had "their earnings supplemented by federal payments of about $10,000-a-year using funds from the Former Presidents Act."

[The list] includes longtime Bill Clinton aide Justin Cooper, who despite not having a security clearance, any apparent training in cyber security, or a job at the State Department, in early 2009 helped set up the private email account that Hillary Clinton would use to send and receive classified information as secretary of state. Her use of that system was dubbed "extremely careless" by the FBI director. Cooper continued working to maintain Clinton’s private email system–including advising her top aides Huma Abedin and Cheryl Mills on attempted hacks–through at least 2012, according to emails released by the State Department.

Hillary Clinton has come under intense scrutiny for her exclusive use of a private email server while serving as secretary of state.

Employees of the Clinton Foundation also received federal government benefits:

The program supplemented the income of Clinton’s staff, while providing them with coveted federal government benefits, alleviating the need for the Clinton Foundation or other Clinton-linked entities to foot the bill for such benefits. Similarly, Clinton aides got the GSA to pay for computer technology used partly by the foundation.

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.

A Clinton aide said his boss’s use of the GSA program is entirely consistent with the Former Presidents Act.

Generally, the aide explained that Clinton "wears several hats–among them being former president of the United States and the founder of the Clinton Foundation. His staffing reflects those roles."

Hillary Clinton campaign spokesman Brian Fallon tweeted that the story was "egregiously false" on Thursday morning.