When most people think of giving to “charity,” they think of giving to others. Not the Clintons, drawing from their tax returns released Friday.
Their returns show that out of their 2014 earnings of approximately $28 million, they registered $3 million in charitable deductions. That’s a little more than 10 percent of their income. That’s mighty generous.
But is there more to the story? According to The Washington Free Beacon:
“…the Clintons gave $3 million in 2014 to the Clinton Family Foundation, a small private foundation that the family uses as a pass-through to other charities.
Records show the CFF disbursed $3.7 million in 2014, including $1.8 million to the Bill, Hillary, and Chelsea Clinton Foundation.”
Based on their tax records, every penny of the Clintons’ charitable giving in 2014 first passed through their own organization. With allegations of influence-peddling swirling around the Clintons’ foundations, was this just another way to put that charity money to “good use” – at the very least, promoting the Clinton brand?
Notwithstanding the $1.8 million that was donated first to the Clinton Family Foundation, then to the Clinton Foundation proper, the rest ($1.9 million) went to other charities, but not before being moved through the Clinton Family Foundation first.
The Clinton Family Foundation donated money to organizations like the School of American Ballet ($25,000), Concerns of Police Survivors ($2,500), and the Museum for African Art ($50,000).
Looking back further, the Wall Street Journal reports that out of the $14.9 million the Clintons have given to charity since 2007, all but $200,000 went through their own foundation.
In 2008, when Hillary Clinton first ran for President, the non-partisan Tax Foundation asked:
“Why wouldn’t they just donate some money to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, for example, or some other charity?
…when somebody donates $10 million to a university to have a building named after himself (or to a charity named after himself), isn’t that person getting something in return too?”
IJReview tried to contact the Clinton Foundation via email and phone messages in order to get a clearer picture regarding “pass-through” donations, but has received no reply.