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Oh boy: Hill reports DOJ has opened a new investigation into Clinton Foundation pay-for-play
Turning what everyone knows into legally actionable information?
There's what everyone knows, and then there's what you can prove sufficient to use it in a legal action. They're not the same thing, but unless politically insane factors are influencing the process, the former tends to lead to the pursuit of the latter.
What everyone knows is that the Clinton Foundation existed for one purpose and one purpose only: To allow the Clintons to enrich themselves by trading their ability to influence public policy in exchange for cash from those who could benefit from said policy. Anyone who denies this is true is either a shameless Clinton sycophant or simply an idiot.
Can this clear understanding of what's obvious be turned into evidence sufficient to bring a criminal charge? The Obama Department of Justice had no interest whatsoever in charging Hillary Clinton with any crime, even the ones of which she was obviously guilty. It certainly wasn't going to expend any extraordinary effort to gather evidence of other crimes. And it was assumed the Trump DOJ would also be loathe to pursue such investigations out of concern it would look like a political witch hunt, however legitimate it may actually be.
The assumption was apparently wrong:
The Justice Department has launched a new inquiry into whether the Clinton Foundation engaged in any pay-to-play politics or other illegal activities while Hillary Clinton served as secretary of State, law enforcement officials and a witness tells The Hill.
FBI agents from Little Rock, Ark., where the foundation was started, have taken the lead in the investigation and have interviewed at least one witness in the last month, and law enforcement officials said additional activities are expected in the coming weeks.
The officials, who spoke only on condition of anonymity, said the probe is examining whether the Clintons promised or performed any policy favors in return for largesse to their charitable efforts or whether donors made commitments of donations in hopes of securing government outcomes.
The probe may also examine whether any tax-exempt assets were converted for personal or political use and whether the foundation complied with applicable tax laws, the officials said.
One witness recently interviewed by the FBI described the session to The Hill as “extremely professional and unquestionably thorough” and focused on questions about whether donors to Clinton charitable efforts received any favorable treatment from the Obama administration on a policy decision previously highlighted in media reports.
Not for no reason did the Clinton Foundation shut down immediately upon Hillary's defeat in the 2016 presidential election. With no serious prospect of her ever becoming president, there was no chance she or her husband could deliver on any promises to use public policy to benefit donors, and that meant there would be no more donors. A foundation that can't raise money can't operate unless its founders want to self-fund it, and you sure as hell know that wasn't going to happen here. That would be antithetical to the reason the Clintons established the foundation in the first place. It was to make them money, not to cost them money.
Basically, every dollar the Clinton Foundation received was a bribe. Like most of what the Clintons do, there were enough lines of separation and pretexts for deniability that it was hard to prove that in a legal sense, but everyone knew what was going on. If you donated to the Clinton Foundation, you received an implied promise of favorable treatment by the Clintons via their positions in public office.
Hillary delivered as Secretary of State, and would have delivered even more generously as president. And as the 2016 campaign wore on, voters came to learn quite a bit about the Clinton Foundation and how it operated, and many who didn't like having to choose between Hillary and Donald Trump came to the conclusion that a president this steeped in corruption would be a bigger problem than one who could be a blowhard and an obnoxious presence on Twitter.
In other words, while the Clinton Foundation's fundraising model only made sense if you assumed an eventual Hillary presidency, it may have been the Clinton Foundation - and the public's growing knowledge of it - that kept that presidency from ever happening.
I spent years, and wrote many columns, urging to never make this awful woman president. Once her 2016 loss seemed to have accomplished the mission once and for all, I wrote that while I thought she deserved to be prosecuted for any number of crimes, I'd be pretty happy if she would just go away. I still would. But I also believe corruption like that perpetrated by the Clintons deserves consequences.
Besides, it's awfully rich for a woman as corrupt as Hillary to seek to bring that corruption to its highest possible level via control of the presidency, then claim she should not be held criminally accountable precisely because she ran for president. But you know Hillary. She will always come up with a reason the law shoudn't apply to her.
It doesn't sound like the Trump Justice Department agrees. Now if the DOJ would only accept that it is subject to the law.
Dan writes Christian spiritual warfare novels and does all kinds of other weird things too. Follow all his activity by liking him on Facebook!