It, apparently, takes a village to pay for Hillary Clinton to speak at a children’s charity.
The Clinton Foundation acquires a good chunk of its $2 billion worth by collecting speaking and appearance fees for its celebrities, Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton — fees that range from the tens to the hundreds of thousands of dollars. Often, the Clintons give these speeches to benefit nonprofits, as “special guests” of charities at fundraising events, or to solidify a partnership with a nonprofit that shares the same goals and aims as the Clinton Foundation, generally, in the hopes that the foundation will recoup its losses on a Clinton speech with donations and ticket sales to the Clinton event.
According to a list released to Politico, however, sometimes the charities don’t do as well as expected. And in the case of the Boys and Girls Club of Long Beach, a Clinton appearance turns out to be an abject disaster. When they paid a whopping $200,000 for Hillary Clinton to appear at the club — a significant chunk of the Club’s $3 million yearly budget — they definitely didn’t get what they bargained for.
When Condoleezza Rice headlined a 2009 fundraising luncheon for the Boys and Girls Club of Long Beach, she collected a $60,000 speaking fee, then donated almost all of it back to the club, according to multiple sources familiar with the club’s finances.
Hillary Clinton was not so generous to the small charity, which provides after-school programs to underprivileged children across the Southern California city. Clinton collected $200,000 to speak at the same event five years later, but she donated nothing back to the club, which raised less than half as much from Clinton’s appearance as from Rice’s, according to the sources and tax filings.
Instead, Clinton steered her speaking fee to her family’s own sprawling $2 billion charity.
Not only that, but the event itself was a loss — the Club sold only $106,000 worth of tickets, putting the nonprofit, which serves needy kids (also, ironically, a mission of the Clinton Foundation) in California $94,000 in the hole. Clinton, it seemed, requested that her entourage be given free seating as part of the “package deal,” and seating, which ranged from $1,500 to $50,000, that could have been sold to donors ended up being given away. And unlike Condoleezza Rice, who toured the Boys and Girls Club facilities and spoke with the staff and the children they work with, Clinton showed up, gave her speech, and left without so much as a question about the Club’s mission.
Now, of course, there’s nothing that says Hillary Clinton has to give back her hard-earned speaking fees to the charity she’s taking the money from. And there’s also nothing that says that Hillary has to stay at a fundraiser for longer than it takes to do her job. The Clintons were, after all, hard up for money, having such trouble making ends meet after leaving the White House, that it’s easy to understand that Hillary Clinton thought her own needs were far greater than those of inner city children who need a place to go after school to avoid being conscripted into drug-dealing street gangs. She’s so in tune with the common people, it’s a wonder that her campaign hasn’t mined her work with so many grassroots charity operations to substantiate her populist credentials.