If 2016 ended on a sour note for the Clintons, 2017 doesn’t seem to be off to a better start. Hillary Clinton lost the 2016 election, in part, because of the questions surrounding the Clinton Foundation. Amid accusations that it was a pay for play scheme and not a legitimate charity, the issue dogged the Clintons for months. Now news is breaking that the Clinton Global Initiative is going to be shut down in the next few months due to a lack of donations. From the Washington Times:The Clinton Global Initiative has terminated 22 employees and will soon become another casualty of the 2016 election season.
CGI, which opened in 2005, will officially close April 15, 2017. Paperwork filed with the New York Department of Labor Jan. 12 confirmed the “discontinuation,” along with the termination of 22 employees. The Jan. 12 filing makes permanent plans issued Aug. 22 by former President Bill Clinton as the family attempted to extricate itself from any conflicts of interest.
A spokesperson for the Clinton Foundation declined to comment on the record with Fox News when contacted Monday about the WARN notice [The Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act].
“This [group] wasn’t just for charitable ends,” Brian Morgenstern, vice president for the Manhattan Republican Party, told the network. “As the initiative is closing its doors, you see foreign governments who had pledged tens-of-millions of dollars pulling their donations now that Hillary Clinton will not be the president. That shows a lot of people that this was more than just a charity. This was a way for the Clintons to network and really peddle influence due to their positions in leadership.”CGI was criticized prior to the Nov. 8, 2016, election when stolen emails belonging to Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta detailed some of the group’s inner workings. WikiLeaks documents revealed Teneo co-founder Douglas Band discussing ways his consulting firm secured lucrative deals for Mr. Clinton.
While Clinton’s defenders claim the organization was purely charitable, one can’t help but question the timing of the declining donations. Now that Hillary Clinton won’t have any power, foreign governments have suddenly lost interest in handing over the cash.
If the Clinton Global Initiative was all about charity, why should it matter that Hillary Clinton will not be in a position of power? What seems obvious by now is that the CGI was more about buying and selling influence than it was about helping people. Now that influence is no longer for sale, the CGI is closing its doors.Americans saw through the façade the entire time, instead opting to elect Donald Trump to take the country in a new direction. Hillary Clinton’s career in politics seems to over, and part of her charity empire is suddenly going down with it. Who would have guessed?
[Note: This post was authored by Michael Lee. Follow him on Twitter @UAMichaelLee]