Politics & Policy

Does Anyone Actually Believe Cheryl Mills Was Just Helping the Clinton Foundation for Fun?

(Lucas Jackson/Reuters)
Sorry, but I'm actually not an idiot.

I can’t decide what’s more infuriating: Those e-mails suggesting inappropriate links between Hillary Clinton’s State Department and the Clinton Foundation, or her campaign’s explanation of those e-mails suggesting that they think I’m a total, complete moron.

At the same time that Cheryl Mills was working as chief of staff in the secretary of state’s office, she was also conducting interviews for the secretary of state’s foundation. That is a textbook example of a situation that, at the very least, looks like someone using her public resources for personal gain. Any reasonable person can recognize that.

But the Clinton campaign — apparently hoping that voters completely lack critical-thinking skills  – has released a statement in response insisting that all suspicions are completely ridiculous, that Mills was just doing “volunteer work for a charitable foundation,” and that “the idea that this poses a conflict of interest is absurd.”

That’s right . . . Mills was just doing it for fun! She was just like, “Hey I’ve got some time off . . . you know what my favorite thing to do in the whole world is? Watch TV? Drink wine? Nahhhhh, I want to go interview potential candidates for the Clinton Foundation!  And she definitely chose that specific foundation solely because it was so great and fun, and definitely not because it was one that was run by her boss. How “absurd” to think that someone spending her free time doing work for her boss’ foundation might possibly indicate she was receiving anything from her boss for doing so. In fact, I’m sure they never even talked about it! And if you think otherwise, then you are the one who is being “absurd!”

Does anyone else hear how ridiculous that sounds?

When Hillary Clinton took office as secretary of state, she and her foundation agreed to conduct their affairs in a way that would not “create conflicts or the appearance of conflicts for Senator Clinton as Secretary of State.” Got that? Not even the appearance of conflict — and regardless of what you think about what actually happened, you still can’t deny that this is a situation where that “appearance” is definitely, glaringly, blatantly present.

Of course, Hillary Clinton knows all of this, and she knew it at the time. She’s a career politician. Not only was she well aware of how it would look, but she also knew enough about political media to have predicted that people would find out about it when she ran for president. But guess what? She did it anyway, which suggests that she believes that she doesn’t have to worry about what she does or how it will look. She just does what she thinks is best for herself, no matter how glaringly inappropriate, because she is confident that no matter what, she will never, ever have to suffer any real consequences for her behavior.

#related#What’s even worse is that this attitude is par for the course for the Clintons. Whether it’s this kind of shady business with her slush fund foundation, or her husband Bill having a private chat with Loretta Lynch as the Department of Justice was deciding whether or not to indict her, it’s clear that the Clintons are so confident in their total power that they are certain they will never, ever have to answer for anything.

Investigations and indictments aside, we already know that the way Hillary Clinton conducted herself as secretary of state was dishonest, inadequate, and fueled by her own self-interest. Scandal surrounds this woman, and for her campaign to claim that it’s “absurd” — not even understandable but incorrect, but actually “absurd” — to be suspicious about the objectively suspicious behavior of a woman with an objectively suspicious track record is, objectively, insulting.

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