With the Clinton Foundation now under Department of Justice scrutiny over allegations of “pay for play” politics, it’s clear that while the Clintons’ political power may be fading, their propensity for scandal isn’t going away.
But there is more. The Federal Election Commission is examining a complaint that the Hillary Victory Fund — a $500 million joint fundraising committee between the Clinton campaign, the Democratic National Committee and Democratic state parties — engaged in a scheme to illegally direct some $84 million directly to Clinton’s campaign.
A pro-Trump political action committee called the Committee to Defend the President filed the complaint with the FEC in December accusing the Democratic establishment of using state chapters as straw men to circumvent campaign donation limits and launder money to Clinton’s campaign.
Last week, meanwhile, the Hill reported the Justice Department has launched a new inquiry into whether the Clintons promised or performed any policy favors in return for donations to their Clinton Foundation while Hillary Clinton was secretary of state.
The FEC allegation, said Ted Harvey, chairman of the Committee to Defend the President, is based on former DNC Chairwoman Donna Brazile’s public comments, a memo by former Clinton campaign manager Robbie Mook and months of reviewing FEC reports.
The FEC complaint, according to Fox News states that based on publicly available FEC records, “repeatedly throughout the 2016 presidential campaign, HVF would purportedly transfer funds to its constituent political committees, which included between 34 and 40 state parties.”
“On the very same day each of these transfers supposedly occurred, or occasionally the very next day, every single one of those state parties purportedly contributed all of those funds to the DNC,” the complaint states.
Harvey, in an opinion piece for the Washington Examiner, said the Hillary Victory Fund solicited six-figure donations from major donors, including Calvin Klein and “Family Guy” creator Seth MacFarlane, and “papered” them through state parties en route to DNC and then the Clinton campaign.
But, in reality, Harvey said, “the fund either never transferred $84 million to state parties, sending the funds straight to the DNC, or it made the transfers without state parties having actual control of the money.”
In either case, he said, the fund violated campaign finance laws in a way that was determined in the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2014 McCutcheon v. FEC ruling to be illegal.
Harvey pointed out that if the allegations are confirmed by the FEC, “Clinton’s $84 million money laundering scheme will go down as the single largest campaign finance scandal in U.S. history.”
In her 2017 book “Hacks,” former DNC Chairwoman Brazile explains how Democratic Party donors were able to circumvent the law that allows no more than $2,700 to be contributed from an individual directly to a presidential campaign.
“Individuals who had maxed out their $2,700 contribution limit to the campaign could write an additional check for $353,400 to the Hillary Victory Fund — that figure represented $10,000 to each of the 32 states’ parties who were part of the Victory Fund agreement — $320,000— and $33,400 to the DNC,” Brazile writes.
“The money would be deposited in the states first, and transferred to the DNC shortly after that. Money in the battleground states usually stayed in that state, but all the other states funneled that money directly to the DNC, which quickly transferred the money to [Clinton campaign headquarters in] Brooklyn.”
Brazile says the scheme meant the victory fund was going to Clinton before she received the nomination.
‘Can you imagine the media outrage?’
Harvey noted mainstream media, including the New York Times, largely has ignored the FEC scandal.
“Can you imagine the media outrage if Republicans oversaw an $84 million money laundering scheme?” he asks.
It’s not the first time Hillary Clinton has been under scrutiny for fundraising violations.
In 2006, a campaign fundraising group assisting Hillary Clinton’s bid for the Senate in 2000 agreed to a $35,000 fine for underreporting hundreds of thousands of dollars spent on a Hollywood fundraiser.
New York Senate 2000 agreed to a federal finding that it failed to report $721,895 spent on the fundraiser, according to paperwork provided by donor Peter F. Paul.
Paul, as WND reported, helped finance the star-studded fundraising gala, which featured Cher, Diana Ross, Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston.
Paul saw the agreement as “a kind of vindication,” but said “this is only one battle.” He filed a $17 million suit against the Clintons contending the former president destroyed his company to get out of an agreement to work for him.
The fundraiser also led to the criminal trial of Clinton’s former national finance director, David F. Rosen, who was acquitted of lying to the FEC about the event.
Paul contends Rosen was a sacrificial lamb who was set up to take the fall for higher-ups, arguing the jurors “clearly didn’t believe that he filed these false FEC reports on his own.”