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National Security & Defense

The U.S. Cannot Elect a Secretary of State Who Accepted Foreign Funds

From an extremely busy, far-ranging Morning Jolt:

Why Elizabeth Warren Should Smile This Morning: Hillary’s Foreign Funding Scandal

No, this woman cannot be president:

The Clinton Foundation accepted millions of dollars from seven foreign governments during Hillary Rodham Clinton’s tenure as secretary of state, including one donation that violated its ethics agreement with the Obama administration, foundation officials disclosed Wednesday.

Sorry. This is disqualifying. The secretary of state cannot take money from foreign governments while allegedly representing our interests in negotiations with that government. It’s bribery:

The new disclosures, provided in response to questions from The Washington Post, make clear that the 2008 agreement did not prohibit foreign countries with interests before the U.S. government from giving money to the charity closely linked to the secretary of state.

In one instance, foundation officials acknowledged they should have sought approval in 2010 from the State Department ethics office, as required by the agreement for new government donors, before accepting a $500,000 donation from the Algerian government.

The money was given to assist with earthquake relief in Haiti, the foundation said. At the time, Algeria, which has sought a closer relationship with Washington, was spending heavily to lobby the State Department on human rights issues . . . 

Some of the donations came from countries with complicated diplomatic, military and financial relationships with the U.S. government, including Kuwait, Qatar and Oman.

Other nations that donated included Australia, Norway and the Dominican Republic.

The claim is that all of the money went to good charitable causes. But Algeria could donate to Haitian relief funds, or any other charity, directly. There’s an obvious incentive to give money — even with the allegedly best intentions — to the Clinton Foundation: access and goodwill to the Clintons.

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