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August 23, 2016

Emails Show More Clinton Fund Donors Sought State Dept. Help

The latest batch of State Department emails released by conservative advocacy group Judicial Watch shows a pattern of Clinton Foundation supporters seeking meetings with and favors from the agency when it was headed by Hillary Clinton, reports The Washington Post.

The 725 pages of correspondence made public Monday indicate that Huma Abedin, Ms. Clinton’s deputy chief of staff, was the primary point of contact within State for requests from the likes of rock star and philanthropist Bono and the crown prince of Bahrain, frequently passed along by Doug Band, a top aide to Bill Clinton who helped the former president launch the foundation.

The emails show that Ms. Abedin occasionally discussed such communications with Ms. Clinton but that many requests were dismissed, particularly if they involved more than a meeting with the then-secretary of state. Ms. Clinton’s presidential campaign and the Clinton Foundation have denied assertions by Republican leaders that she used her cabinet post to confer favors on supporters of her family’s charity. GOP nominee Donald Trump called Monday for the appointment of a special prosecutor to investigate the foundation’s financial dealings, USA Today reports.

Bill Clinton, in a letter Monday to foundation supporters, said he would leave the board of the foundation-affiliated Clinton Health Access Initiative if his wife is elected president, The Washington Post writes. The missive followed last week’s announcement that the foundation would forgo all donations from foreign and corporate sources during a Hillary Clinton administration. Such giving represents more than half of the foundation’s fundraising, according to a Post analysis. It is not yet clear if the donation curbs would also apply to foundation subsidiaries like the health initiative.

In other Clinton Foundation coverage, Salon asks ethics watchdogs to weigh in on whether the charity network’s fundraising and leadership changes alleviate conflict-of-interest concerns; the Financial Times editorializes that the former and possibly future first family should fully separate itself from the foundation; and Democratic political operative James Carville tells CNN that people “are going to die” if the foundation is shut down and its work on global health interrupted.