Saturday, April 19, 2008

The oh-so-high ethical standards of the Clintons

The National Center for Policy Analysis takes a closer look at the Clinton tax returns.

New York Senator Hillary Clinton and her husband spend a lot of time on the Presidential trail deploring the "wealthy" and "well-connected." As their newly released tax records for 2000 to 2007 show, they know of whom they speak, says the Wall Street Journal...

* The former, and perhaps future, first couple earned $109 million over the past eight years, putting them among the top .01 percent of taxpayers.
* The bulk of the Clintons' income came from speech-making ($51.9 million) and book-writing ($29.6 million).

It is understandable why the couple took so long to release their returns, and is still reluctant to release other information, says the Journal. Their political status has given them access to wealthy folks who've helped make them rich [, e.g.,]

* Bill Clinton raked in as much as $15 million working as an adviser and rainmaker for billionaire financier Ron Burkle's Yucaipa firm.
* The former President also took in $3.3 million in consulting fees from InfoUSA CEO Vinod Gupta, who has also helped fund Hillary Clinton's White House bid.

Meanwhile, the Clintons also made liberal use of the charitable deduction:

* They claimed $10.2 million in charitable giving over the eight years.
* Intriguingly, nearly all the donations went to the Clinton Family Foundation, which has disbursed only half the money.
* The Clintons can thus use the foundation for, strategic giving, such as the $100,000 it donated last year to a local South Carolina library -- the day after Hillary Clinton debated in that key primary state.

There are other examples of such politically targeted philanthropy and it's worth noting that most of the foundation's disbursements came only after Hillary announced her Presidential run, says the Journal.

Honestly. This is about as surprising as a Britney flashing "accident".

Hat tip: Arkancide

No comments: