Politics & Policy

Mrs. Clinton and Her Fixer

Huma Abedin with Clinton at a campaign stop in Des Moines, Iowa, November 15, 2015. (Jim Young/Reuters)

Huma Abedin must be a remarkable woman: She has held down four of the worst jobs in politics, several of them simultaneously: right hand to Hillary Rodham Clinton, fixer and patron-patronizer for the Clinton Foundation, an editor of a journal spawned by a major al-Qaeda financier, and wife to Anthony Weiner.

Mrs. Carlos Danger has some explaining to do.

So does Mrs. Clinton. More, in fact.

Mrs. Clinton plainly has lied about her e-mails, repeatedly, and then lied about lying about them. The new e-mails released in response to ongoing litigation from Judicial Watch include 20 previously unseen exchanges between Mrs. Clinton and her chief aide, Ms. Abedin, which now brings the total number of official, work-related e-mails Mrs. Clinton failed to turn over to investigators to just shy of 200 — so much for those claims that these were private communications about yoga classes and Chelsea’s wedding plans.

It is clear why Mrs. Clinton did not want to release these e-mails: They detail precisely the Clinton Foundation corruption that critics have long alleged. Specifically, the e-mails detail Huma Abedin’s role – while she was on the State Department’s payroll — acting as a fixer for the Clinton Foundation, making sure that influential friends overseas, especially donors, had access to the U.S. secretary of state in order to keep their egos inflated and their wallets deflated.

Abedin already admitted during legal proceedings that one of her assignments while working at State was seeing to “Clinton family matters,” which is inappropriate on its face. But what those matters consisted of is a fairly obvious case of rewarding Clinton Foundation donors with access to the nation’s No. 1 diplomat. Who were those donors? Crown Prince Salman of Bahrain wanted a sit-down with Secretary Clinton but was rebuffed; Clinton Foundation executive Douglas Band intervened through Abedin to try to find a work-around for the crown prince, who gave donations to the Clinton Global Initiative totaling $32 million through 2010. Donations to the Clinton Foundation came in from the kingdom itself and from the state oil company. Band also intervened to secure a visa for a foreign athlete held up because of his criminal record, doing so at the behest of donor Casey Wasserman, a Hollywood sports-entertainment mogul, whose foundation has contributed between $5 million and $10 million to the Clinton Foundation (here Abedin demurred).

Others who got the royal treatment via Band and Abedin: Slimfast boss S. Daniel Abraham (another $5-million-to-$10-million donor), Clinton Foundation benefactor and Clinton campaign donor Kevin O’Keefe, Democratic fundraiser Maureen White ($75,000), telecom entrepreneur and Democratic fundraiser Jill Iscol ($500,000 to $1 million, also co-chair of Clinton’s finance committee during her Senate race), and other Democratic players and corporate benefactors.

It is important to keep in mind what the Clinton Foundation mainly does: It does precious little in the way of actual philanthropy ($9 million worth out of $140 million in revenue for 2013) but instead spends almost all of its money on salaries and travel expenses for various Clintons (including Chelsea Clinton, now its vice chairman), Democratic allies, toadies, flunkies, hangers-on, and assorted minions. It is a full-employment sinecure program for friends and family of the Clinton political operation, and very little more.

#related#There is a case to be made — and it should be made — that Clinton obstructed justice and made false statements to investigators regarding her private server and e-mails. The FBI dropped the ball on that, but that ball can be picked up again. Yes, it is awkward to conduct a criminal investigation during a presidential campaign. It is more awkward to conduct one involving a sitting president. Either option is more desirable than declaring elected officials above the law — and Mrs. Clinton repeatedly and willfully violated laws intended to ensure honesty, transparency, and accountability in the State Department.

Huma Abedin may have been the conductor of influence, but the wrongdoing here is all Mrs. Clinton’s.

Serial dishonesty, self-serving, and influence-peddling: These are the Clintons, after all. No one can say he is surprised. 

The Editors — The Editors comprise the senior editorial staff of the National Review magazine and website.

Most Popular

Politics & Policy

Students’ Anti-Gun Views

Are children innocents or are they leaders? Are teenagers fully autonomous decision-makers, or are they lumps of mental clay, still being molded by unfolding brain development? The Left seems to have a particularly hard time deciding these days. Take, for example, the high-school students from Parkland, ... Read More
PC Culture

Kill Chic

We live in a society in which gratuitous violence is the trademark of video games, movies, and popular music. Kill this, shoot that in repugnant detail becomes a race to the visual and spoken bottom. We have gone from Sam Peckinpah’s realistic portrayal of violent death to a gory ritual of metal ripping ... Read More
Elections

Romney Is a Misfit for America

Mitt’s back. The former governor of Massachusetts and occasional native son of Michigan has a new persona: Mr. Utah. He’s going to bring Utah conservatism to the whole Republican party and to the country at large. Wholesome, efficient, industrious, faithful. “Utah has a lot to teach the politicians in ... Read More
Law & the Courts

What the Second Amendment Means Today

The horrifying school massacre in Parkland, Fla., has prompted another national debate about guns. Unfortunately, it seems that these conversations are never terribly constructive — they are too often dominated by screeching extremists on both sides of the aisle and armchair pundits who offer sweeping opinions ... Read More
U.S.

Fire the FBI Chief

American government is supposed to look and sound like George Washington. What it actually looks and sounds like is Henry Hill from Goodfellas: bad suit, hand out, intoning the eternal mantra: “F*** you, pay me.” American government mostly works by interposition, standing between us, the free people at ... Read More
Film & TV

Black Panther’s Circle of Hype

The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) first infantilizes its audience, then banalizes it, and, finally, controls it through marketing. This commercial strategy, geared toward adolescents of all ages, resembles the Democratic party’s political manipulation of black Americans, targeting that audience through its ... Read More