It’s flown a little under the radar because every news outlet is focused on Paul Manafort and Michael Cohen and whether or not there was collusion with Russia or a campaign finance violation on the part of the Trump campaign, but there’s a hearing scheduled next week into the ongoing investigation into the Clinton Foundation.
And when the hearing opens, House Congressional members will have before them “6,000 pages of evidence attached to a whistleblower submission filed secretly more than a year ago with the IRS and FBI.”
In a 48-page, secret submission filed with the IRS and the FBI back in 2017, whistleblowers offered 95 exhibits, including internal legal reviews, that have “flagged serious concerns about legal compliance, improper commingling of personal and charity business and “quid pro quo” promises made to donors while Hillary Clinton was secretary of State,” reports The Hill.
The submission also cites an interview its investigators conducted with Andrew Kessel that quotes the foundation’s longtime chief financial officer as saying he was unable to stop former President Clinton from “commingling” personal business and charitable activities inside the foundation and that he “knows where all the bodies are buried.”
“There is probable cause that the Clinton Foundation has run afoul of IRS rules regarding tax-exempt charitable organizations and has acted inconsistently with its stated purpose,” MDA Analytics alleged in its submission. “The Foundation should be investigated for all of the above-mentioned improprieties. The tax rules, codes, statutes and the rule of law should and must be applied in this case.”
The evidence was complied by a firm called MDA Analytics LLC, a private firm that focuses on non-profits and who decided to fund the investigation into the Foundation on its own dime. Investigators with the firm have a quite a pedigree: compliance experts with experience investigating private Wall Street firms; Drug Enforcement Administration agents who have money-laundering investigation experience; investigators who had examined terrorism-financing probes; and others who had been involved with U.S. attorney prosecutions.
Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., who heads up the conservative House Freedom Caucus and is the chairman of the House Oversight Subcommittee on Government Operations, said the hearing next week is to assess the status of the Foundation investigation.
According to Fox News, one of the primary reasons the situation is garnering more scrutiny is because of remarks Clinton Foundation CFO Andrew Kessel made to MDA Analytics in November 2016 regarding the behavior of Bill Clinton.
During the meeting, Kessel said that “one of the biggest problems was [former President Bill] Clinton’s commingling and use of business and donated funds and his personal expenses.” A separate interview memo stated that Bill Clinton “mixes and matches his personal business with that of the foundation. Many people within the foundation have tried to caution him about this but he does not listen, and there really is no talking to him.”
“Whenever we look at the possibility of ‘pay to play’ by government officials, current or former, it demands answers,” Meadows added, “and anyone who uses public office to sell access for their own financial benefit must be held accountable.”
Next week is shaping up to be a battle between competing stories of potential criminal behavior at the highest levels of the federal government.