Clinton speeches raised at least $12M for foundation
Portsmouth, N.H. — The Clinton Foundation said Thursday that Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton have raised at least $12 million to support the family's philanthropy since 2002 by delivering paid speeches to an assortment of corporations, universities and foreign entities.
The speeches may have brought in as much as $26.4 million to the foundation, which released a list of nearly 100 speeches and a broad range of the fees the Clintons received for delivering them.
The fees benefited the Clinton Foundation, the global charity the former president started after he left the White House. The foundation's finances, including its acceptances of donations from foreign governments and corporations, have come under heavy scrutiny as Hillary Rodham Clinton seeks the White House for a second time.
The foundation's voluntary release of the speaking fees followed last week's filing of the former secretary of state's financial disclosure at the start of her presidential campaign. Bill and Hillary Clinton reported they earned more than $30 million combined in personal income since January 2014, with most of it coming from paid speaking engagements around the globe.
Most of the fees paid to the foundation were for speeches by former President Bill Clinton, who raised between $8.7 million and $19.35 million by delivering 72 speeches during the past decade. The foundation received between $500,000 and $1 million for speeches by the former president to Hanwha, a business conglomerate in South Korea; the Nigerian ThisDay newspaper group; and Dublin-based DMC Communications Ltd. on behalf of the All Ireland Scholarships.
Bill Clinton also delivered lectures on behalf of the foundation to the Beijing Huaduo Enterprise Consulting Company, the China Real Estate Development Group, the Thailand Ministry of Energy, the Qatar First Investment Bank and the U.S. Islamic World Conference. The fees for those speeches were between $250,000 and $500,000.
Hillary Clinton brought in between $2.95 million and $6.25 million for 16 speeches on the foundation's behalf. Financial institutions such as Citibank, Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase and Carlyle Investment Management paid at least $250,000 to the foundation for the speeches by the former New York senator and first lady.
Paid appearances before financial firms are often cited by liberals who question whether Hillary Clinton is too closely aligned with Wall Street and would aggressively regulate the financial industry and address economic inequality, a leading issue in the 2016 campaign.
Telmex Foundation, one of several charitable organizations under the umbrella of Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim, a longtime Clinton friend, also paid the foundation at least $250,000 for a Hillary Clinton speaking engagement.
The Democratic presidential hopeful brought in money to the foundation from speeches at several colleges and universities, including Colgate University, the University of California, Los Angeles, Hamilton College, the University of Miami and the foundation for the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
Daughter Chelsea Clinton generated between $370,000 and $800,000 during that period, the records show.
Bill Clinton has defended the foundation and its willingness to voluntarily disclose its donors, telling NBC News earlier this month that he gives a lot of his fees to the foundation every year.
"The people who have attacked the foundation have practiced selective nondisclosure," he said in the interview, adding: "I really trust the American people to figure it out. I always have. And so far, I haven't been disappointed."
Craig Minassian, a spokesman for the foundation, noted that the charity has listed more than 300,000 donors on its website and "posting these speeches is just another example of how our disclosure policies go above and beyond what's required of charities."
He said the funding allows the foundation "to effectively and efficiently use our resources to implement programs that are fighting HIV/AIDS and childhood obesity, increasing opportunity for women and girls, lifting people out of poverty and combating climate change."