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The way to crush the middle class is to grind them between the millstones of taxation and inflation. – Vladimir Lenin

Archive for January 13th, 2009

Pay to Play Corruption – Hillary Busted

Posted by iusbvision on January 13, 2009

Wow the AP does a real investigation. I must say I am shocked that they would have the courage to publish this. The real question; will it be on NBC News. If this were a republican the media frenzy would begin. ( I just wantched the news on one of the big three – no mention – editor).

Excerpts: 

AP: Clinton acted on concerns of husband’s donors
By SHARON THEIMER, Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON – Secretary of State nominee Hillary Rodham Clinton intervened at least six times in government issues directly affecting companies and others that later contributed to her husband’s foundation, an Associated Press review of her official correspondence found.

The overlap of names on former President Bill Clinton‘s foundation donor list and business interests whose issues she championed raise new questions about potential ethics conflicts between her official actions and her husband’s fundraising. The AP obtained three of the senator’s government letters under the Freedom of Information Act.

During Clinton’s confirmation hearing Tuesday, Sen. Richard Lugar of Indiana, the Foreign Relations Committee’s senior Republican, said the foundation’s charitable efforts “should not be a barrier to Senator Clinton’s service,” but he acknowledged the potential that conflicts of interest might arise: “Work of the Clinton foundation is a unique complication that will have to be managed with great care and transparency.”

Under an agreement with President-elect Barack Obama, Bill Clinton recently released the names of donors to his foundation, a nonprofit that has raised at least $492 million — including millions from foreign governments — to fund his library in Little Rock, Ark., and charitable efforts worldwide on such issues as AIDS, poverty and climate change.

Lugar told Sen. Clinton on Tuesday that her husband’s foundation should not accept any more contributions from foreign governments.

The letters and donations involve pharmaceutical companies and telecommunications and energy interests.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090113/ap_on_go_ca_st_pe/clinton_letters___dollars

The details so far:

Sen. Clinton wrote to the Federal Communications Commission in February 2004 expressing concern that changes to competitive local exchange carrier access rates could hurt carriers such as New York-based PAETEC Communications. PAETEC’s chief executive is Arunas Chesonis, whose family and charity later contributed to the Clinton foundation.

Sarah Wood, executive director of the Chesonis Family Foundation, was invited by a part of the Clinton Foundation, the Clinton Global Initiative, to join the initiative after it was established in 2005, Wood said Monday. The Chesonis family personally paid $15,000 for Wood’s membership in CGI in September 2007, and the Chesonis foundation paid $20,000 for it in March 2008, Wood said.

The Chesonis Family Foundation made a $10 million pledge last May to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology for solar energy research, meeting Wood’s commitment to the Clinton Global Initiative to act on a project, Wood said.

Pharmaceutical company Merck & Co. is also a member of the Clinton Global Initiative, company spokeswoman Amy Rose said. Merck joined CGI in 2006, when dues were $15,000, and also was a member in 2007 and in 2008, when membership dues rose to $20,000. As part of its commitment to CGI, Merck sponsors public health initiatives around the world, Rose said. Merck joined CGI on its own initiative, she said.

Sen. Clinton wrote a November 2005 letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt urging approval of the human papillomavirus vaccine. Merck applied in December 2005 for approval of its HPV vaccine, Gardasil, and the vaccine was approved for use in females ages 9 to 26. Merck is still seeking approval for use in older women, Rose said.

Barr Laboratories gave $10,001 to $25,000 to the Clinton foundation, the charity’s donor list shows. Barr joined the Clinton Global Initiative in April 2007, spokeswoman Carol Cox said. Cox didn’t comment on Clinton’s letter.

Several of the letters involve issues directly affecting KeySpan Corp., the energy company now known as National Grid. KeySpan didn’t ask the senator to intervene and had no communication with her office about its later donations to the Clinton foundation, said company spokesman Chris Mostyn.

KeySpan joined the Clinton Global Initiative in 2007 because it wanted to become involved in the climate change issue, Mostyn said. KeySpan paid $15,000 for its membership in 2007 and $20,000 for 2008, Mostyn said.

Clinton joined several other members of Congress from New York in February 2003 asking the Commerce Department to consider an appeal by Islander East, a limited liability company formed by subsidiaries of KeySpan Energy and another company, to build a natural gas pipeline to serve Connecticut, New York City and Long Island, N.Y.

Clinton and the other lawmakers wanted the Commerce Department to overturn the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection’s determination that Islander East’s pipeline plan was inconsistent with the state’s coastal zone management program. Sen. Christopher Dodd, D-Conn., and other Connecticut lawmakers wrote to Commerce urging denial of Islander East’s appeal.

Clinton earlier wrote to the Long Island Power Authority and to KeySpan urging them to consider the modernization of KeySpan’s New York power plants. Her letter in June 2002 offered her help on the issue. Also in 2002, Clinton wrote the federal government letters on the natural gas Millennium Pipeline Project in which KeySpan was involved, urging an extension of a deadline for public comment and forwarding information on route alternatives.

Posted in Campaign 2008, Chuck Norton, Government Gone Wild | 1 Comment »