That’s the headline to an …unusual… New York Magazine takedown by Jonathan Chait. It’s unusual because first you have things like these four bullet points, which if you’re on Team Clinton have got to hurt:
•The New York Times has a report about the State Department’s decision to approve the sale of Uranium mines to a Russian company that donated $2.35 million to the Clinton Global Initiative, and that a Russian investment bank promoting the deal paid Bill $500,000 for a speech in Moscow.
•The Washington Post reports that Bill Clinton has received $26 million in speaking fees from entities that also donated to the Clinton Global Initiative.
•The Washington Examiner reports, “Twenty-two of the 37 corporations nominated for a prestigious State Department award — and six of the eight ultimate winners — while Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State were also donors to the Clinton family foundation.”
•And Reuters reports, “Hillary Clinton’s family’s charities are refiling at least five annual tax returns after a Reuters review found errors in how they reported donations from governments, and said they may audit other Clinton Foundation returns in case of other errors.”
But the lead-in offers the Clintons something of a way out:
All sorts of unproven worst-case-scenario questions float around the web of connections between Bill’s private work, Hillary Clinton’s public role as secretary of State, the Clintons’ quasi-public charity, and Hillary’s noncompliant email system. But the best-case scenario is bad enough: The Clintons have been disorganized and greedy.
“Unproven worst-case scenarios” is the kind of line James Carville would be field-testing on MSNBC before going on one of the big networks people actually watch. And Chait might think he’s being evenhanded or something, but when I read “disorganized and greedy” I do not think “presidential timber.”
Then Chait writes that the Clintons public-private role (privately raising gobs of money from foreign governments while Hillary was in charge of the nation’s foreign relations) was a “difficult situation to navigate.”
Really? How about not taking the money? No? Apparently this doesn’t occur to the Clintons or to Chait, who goes out of his way to blame the mess on others:
And yet the Clintons paid little to no attention to this problem. Nicholas Confessore described their operation as “a sprawling concern, supervised by a rotating board of old Clinton hands, vulnerable to distraction and threatened by conflicts of interest.
If the Clintons had only paid more attention, they could have cleaned the mess right up? Is that what Chait is trying to say here? What a ridiculous assertion. The operation was set up explicitly to use the couple’s power and influence to shake down anybody with a fat paycheck, which is precisely what they did.
And now the Clintons are using the Audacity of Corruption to distract the easily distracted — like Chait — in the little details, so that they’ll miss the one big obvious fact: Hillary Clinton belongs in jail.