The Clinton foundation is now accepting donations from foreign governments, something it stopped doing after Hillary Clinton became Secretary of State in 2009, and the practice is raising eyebrows as the former first lady ponders a White House run.
Clinton, who has yet to publicly say she will join the 2016 race for president, has watched as donations from foreign governments have poured in.
According to The Wall Street Journal
, the foundation has received funding from the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Australia, and Germany. A Canadian government agency that supports the Keystone XL oil pipeline has also given money to the foundation, which supports several charity projects across the world.
The foundation stopped accepting donations from foreign governments after Clinton was sworn in as secretary of state following a request from the Obama administration. Former President Bill Clinton took control of the foundation's work when his wife worked in the State Department.
Donations are listed on the foundation's website in ranges. The aforementioned Canadian agency, named The Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development agency, donated somewhere between $250,000 and $500,000, reports the Journal. The report, however, claims the exact amount of the donation was somewhere around $480,000.
Critics of the Clinton foundation's fundraising practice say accepting money from foreign governments poses a serious conflict of interest if Clinton runs for president. If she is elected, dealing with countries who supported the foundation could get murky.
"Now that she is gearing up to run for president, the same potential exists for foreign governments to curry favor with her as a potential president of the United States," Kirk Hanson of Santa Clara University told the Journal.
In 2013, at least four donations from foreign governments came into the Clinton Foundation, according to the Journal: Norway, Italy, Australia, and the Netherlands.
Last year, the United Arab Emirates donated somewhere between $1 million and $5 million. Since the foundation was started in 1999, Saudi Arabia's donations total between $10 million and $25 million, according to data cited by the Journal.
Earlier this month, CNN reported
that the Clinton Foundation's chief development officer Dennis Cheng would leave the organization and serve as the finance director for Clinton's expected presidential campaign.
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