Clinton’s private email servers paid by US taxpayers through ‘Former Presidents Act’
Passed in 1958, the same year former President Harry Truman had to sell the family farm to avoid “practically” being on relief, the Act was intended to “maintain the dignity” of former presidents.
Flash forward to 2016, and an investigation carried out by Politico revealed the act is abused by Bill Clinton, who since 2001 has requested more than $16 million under the Act, more than any other living former president.
IT equipment including #servers housed at the Clinton Foundation were purchased with funds from the Act, despite the Clintons becoming multimillionaire members of the ‘1 percent’ #through book deals, speeches and consultancies following Bill’s time as president.
The Act was not intended for such purposes, instead operating as an assistance fund to former presidents as they transition out of office in order to avoid a repeat of Truman’s struggle.
The servers purchased by this fund would later be used for a private email account for Hillary Clinton’s use during her time as secretary of state.
Former Bill Clinton aide Justin Cooper, who assisted Hillary in setting up the private email server, had his earnings supplemented with proceeds provided under the Act, from February 2011 through to 2013.
Declan Kelly, appointed by Hillary Clinton as economic envoy to Northern Ireland in 2009, also worked with Cooper on the launch of Teneo. Kelly would go on to become the firm’s CEO a month after leaving his state post.
Politico found that those who had their earnings supplemented by the federal payments received roughly $10,000 a year.
On several occasions, the GSA responded to requests from Clinton asking him to clarify if it was for his office or the Clinton Foundation. According to Politico, equipment was purchased and housed for a period of time at the foundation’s premises, on at least one occasion.
The information was uncovered via a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request which also unveiled the Clintons had a problem with bed bugs.
Politico said the investigation did not reveal anything illegal, but that it did offer “fresh evidence of how the Clintons blurred the line between their nonprofit foundation, Hillary Clinton’s State Department, and the business dealings of Bill Clinton and the couple’s aides.”
An aide to Bill Clinton told Politico that his use of the program was entirely consistent with the Act and that his staffing reflected his dual roles as former president and founder of the Clinton Foundation.