Psaki's reassurances on Clinton Foundation donations walked back by State Department
Last week’s claim by Jen Psaki that donations by foreign governments to the Clinton Foundation were reviewed by the State Department and passed review was not true. Josh Gerstein of Politico reports:
The State Department is stepping back from a spokeswoman’s comment last week suggesting that the agency’s ethics lawyers signed off on donations to the Clinton Foundation during Hillary Clinton’s tenure as secretary of state.
Asked at a daily briefing Thursday about the foundation’s failure to submit a $500,000 donation from the country of Algeria for a conflict of interest review in 2010, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters that the department did such reviews whenever the non-profit founded by former President Bill Clinton sent in information about a potential gift.
“We like to review — and we have reviewed every donation that was submitted,” Psaki said.
However, there are no indications any Clinton Foundation donations were ever sent to the State Department for approval.
Because the Clinton Foundation failed to submit the donation for review, one can say that Psaki’s words were literally true. But because they came in response to a question about the Algeria donation, they were also misleading enough to rank as a lie, or at least a deception.
Ms. Psaki has now been promoted to Communications Director at the White House, where skill in deploying words that are true but misleading is a job requirement.
Why the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation did not submit the donation for review is an open question, one that Hillary should be pressed to answer once she declares her candidacy.