In my previous post, I promised to offer a little more on the hold Senator John Cornyn placed Tuesday on Hillary’s Clinton’s nomination (since confirmed) for Secretary of State.
The Texas Repubican had raised concerns about foreign donations to her husband’s charitable foundation, but was “swayed by a private conversation with Clinton” (I’m assuming this was Bill).
While I have said Mrs. Clinton could be a “great Secretary of State,” I do have concerns about her family’s ethical troubles. In this AP article on her confirmation, we see a typical Clinton response to a potential ethical problem:
Sen. Richard Lugar, the ranking Republican on the Foreign Relations Committee, proposed that former President Bill Clinton’s foundation reject foreign contributions. But Hillary Clinton rejected Lugar’s proposal, contending that the foundation’s plan to disclose annually its list of donors and a range of its contributions already exceeds legal requirements.
Once again, we see the Clintons pointing out that what they are doing meets “legal requirements,” that is suggesting that as long as something is legal, it is also ethical.
Shouldn’t they also be concerned about conflicts of interest in this unique situation where the husband of a Secretary of State (Bill Clinton is the first such husband; of the two previous female Secretaries of State, one was single, the other divorced).Â Had the wives of their predecessors run foundations that regularly sought large donations from international sources?
I’m concerned that his foundation plans to disclose the donors annually rather than upon receipt, which would better serve President Obama’s commitment to transparency.Â We would be alerted right away to any foreign governments or interests who might be trying to influence US foreign policy (through our Secretary of State).Â Actually, I believe it would be in this nation’s interest if the husband of the Secretary of State refused to seek or except any contributions from foreign sources as long as his wife is in office.
Both Cornyn and Lugar eventually voted to confirm Mrs. Clinton, but the latter “ssaid he hoped Clinton would re-examine her position.” I do too.Â So should we all.