Hilllary's big announcement: She needs more money

Were you one of the (un-)lucky ones to receive an e-mail on Tuesday from Hillary Rodham Clinton from the Clinton Foundation with "announcement" in the subject line?  Many people, including political reporters on vacation, did. 

Thinking it was the announcement they were waiting for – you know what it is – they eagerly clicked it open, hoping for a scoop. 

But what to their wondering eyes should appear but another routine end-of-the-year charity plea from once "dead broke" Hillary, asking for money for the family's Clinton Foundation?

Well, they need the money.  Celebrating their first holidays with their beautiful new granddaughter who lives with her parents, daughter Chelsea and her husband, in a nearly $10,000,000 condo is expensive.  Even though new mother Chelsea, having forsaken her NBC gig, is now working for the Foundation.

Plus the Foundation and the Clintons have other expenses.

The travel costs were $8.448 million, according to the 990 forms the foundation filed with the IRS. America Rising obtained a copy at the Clinton Presidential Center in Little Rock, Ark. That figure was about 5 percent of the more than the $145 million the Clinton Foundation raised last year, but 10 percent of its expenses.  (snip)

Audited filings for 2012 on the foundation’s website show that the group had a surplus then of more than $7 million.

The filings show nine new major donors, including one who gave $15 million. Their giving totaled more than $60 million. The donors’ names were redacted in the filings America Rising copied from the Clinton Presidential Center.

In addition, according to the New York Times  http://www.nytimes.com/2013/08/14/us/politics/unease-at-clinton-foundation-over-finances-and-ambitions.html?pagewanted=all

Today, big-name companies vie to buy sponsorships at prices of $250,000 and up, money that has helped subsidize the foundation’s annual operating costs. Last year, the foundation and two subsidiaries had revenues of more than $214 million.

Yet the foundation’s expansion has also been accompanied by financial problems. In 2007 and 2008, the foundation also found itself competing against Mrs. Clinton’s presidential campaign for donors amid a recession. Millions of dollars in contributions intended to seed an endowment were diverted to other programs, creating tension between Mr. Magaziner and Mr. Band. The foundation piled up a $40 million deficit during those two years, according to tax returns. Last year, it ran more than $8 million in the red.

Amid those shortfalls, the foundation has sometimes catered to donors and celebrities who gave money in ways that raised eyebrows in the low-key nonprofit world. In 2009, during a Clinton Global Initiative gathering at the University of Texas at Austin, the foundation purchased a first-class ticket for the actress Natalie Portman, a special guest, who brought her beloved Yorkie, according to two former foundation employees.

In interviews, foundation officials partly blamed the 2008 recession and difficulties in getting donors to provide operating support rather than restricted grants for specific programs for the deficits.

So, if you want to help them out, remember that today is the last day to donate for the 2014 tax year.  And if you do, not only will you get a 2014 tax deduction and heartfelt thanks from the Clintons, but they will generously "triple every $1 donated" and "will personally match your donation $2 to 1."  (Yeah, yeah, the math.)

Such a deal.  Remember this in 2015.  And beyond.