Foundation to Stop Accepting Foreign, Corporate Gifts If Clinton Wins

Foundation to Stop Accepting Foreign, Corporate Gifts If Clinton Wins

Should Democratic Party nominee Hillary Clinton be elected president, the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation would no longer accept donations from any foreign entity, government, foreign or domestic corporation, or corporate charity, and Bill Clinton would resign from the board, the Associated Press and New York Times report.

In his announcement to foundation staff last week, the former president also said that regardless of the election outcome, the Clinton Global Initiative — an annual gathering where political, corporate, and philanthropic leaders and celebrities share and discuss "commitments" to address poverty, health care, education, climate change, and other global challenges — will end after its final meeting in September, although he was hopeful that the annual CGI University meetings could continue. The foundation plans to continue its work, said Clinton, but intends to refocus its efforts through a process that will take up to a year to complete.

According to a spokesperson, the former president also will refrain from delivering paid speeches until after the election and, if his wife is elected president, will no longer give paid speeches. Hillary Clinton stepped down from the foundation's board after launching her presidential campaign in 2015.

Foreign nationals and countries are prohibited from donating directly to American political campaigns, but they have given hundreds of millions of dollars to the foundation, which has raised more than $2 billion since 2001 in support of various causes around the globe. While the foundation banned donations from foreign governments during Hillary Clinton's tenure as secretary of state, it resumed the practice after she resigned in 2013. Last year, facing  criticism of its dealings with overseas donors, the foundation said it would restrict new contributions from foreign governments but continued to raise funds from foreign individuals, corporations, and charities.

Donations to the Clinton Foundation have been a target for criticism in the election campaign, with Republican Party nominee Donald J. Trump implying that the donors had a "pay-to-play" relationship with Clinton's State Department. Republicans told the AP the latest changes fell short and urged the foundation to stop receiving foreign donations immediately. Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus said the announcement was "too little, too late," adding, "if everything was above board while Hillary Clinton ran the State Department as the Clintons have said, then why change a thing?"

Ken Thomas. "Clinton's Foundation to Alter Donations Policy If Elected." Associated Press 08/18/2016. Amy Chozick. "If Hillary Clinton Wins, Foundation Will Stop Accepting Foreign Donations." New York Times 08/18/2016.