The Clinton Foundation has come under criticism from Republicans over its decision to once again accept contributions from foreign governments, Politico
The Manhattan-based foundation, formally named the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation,
stopped taking money from foreign governments in 2009 when former first lady Hillary Clinton joined the Obama administration as secretary of state.
After she left the Foggy Bottom in 2013, the foundation dropped the ban.
America Rising PAC
charged that it is inappropriate for someone in Clinton's position — particularly because she is the likely 2016 Democratic presidential candidate — to be seen as beholden to foreign powers. It called on the foundation to return the foreign money it has already accepted.
"The alarming rate at which these contributions are now coming in presents a massive conflict-of-interest problem for her," said Republican National Committee spokesman Michael Short. "When that 3 a.m. phone call comes, do voters really want to have a president on the line who took truckloads of cash from other countries? Absolutely not," The Wall Street Journal
According to the Journal:
The Clinton Foundation has taken donations from Canada, which is campaigning for the Keystone XL pipeline.
The United Arab Emirates, a first-time donor, gave between $1 million and $5 million in 2014.
Saudi Arabia has channeled between $10 million and $25 million into the coffers of the foundation since its creation in 1999.
Australia, Germany, Norway, Italy and the Netherlands were also contributors.
"The potential conflict of interest for someone in Clinton's position requires they return the money, and the ethical lapse to accept the money in the first place calls into question Hillary Clinton's judgment," American Rising said in a statement.
The group is also demanding that the foundation "return all donations from non-profits that receive a majority of their funds from a foreign government."
It further wants former President Bill Clinton to return speaking fees from foreign governments and commit not to take any more foreign-funded engagements.
America Rising was founded in 2013 to do opposition research on prominent Democrats, CNN
The Clinton Foundation has served to facilitate many of the former first lady's recent public appearances.
As she prepares for her expected presidential bid, Clinton has remained involved with the foundation's philanthropic activities, Politico reported.
The Clinton Foundation defended the practice of accepting foreign money, saying in a statement
that it has practiced a level of transparency well beyond the philanthropic norm.
"The bottom line: these contributions are helping improve the lives of millions of people across the world, for which we are grateful."
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