FEBRUARY 25, 2015
When Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State, the State Department easily approved speeches Bill Clinton ultimately gave around the world. However, one speech that he planned to give in China received additional scrutiny from the department since the Chinese government was going to make money off of it or fund it. The Clinton Foundation has lately come under scrutiny for accepting foreign donations, but State Department documents do not show evidence for a link between these speaking engagements and the foundation. Judicial Watch obtained the State Department’s ethics reviews of these speeches in 2013 after filing a FOIA lawsuit. You can read more about that lawsuit here.
This quote from the article explains how these speeches were easily approved by the State Department:
In hundreds of documents released to POLITICO under the Freedom of Information Act, not a single case appears where the State Department explicitly rejected a Bill Clinton speech. Instead, the records show State Department lawyers acted on sparse information about business proposals and speech requests and were under the gun to approve the proposals promptly. The ethics agreement did not require that Clinton provide the estimated income from his private arrangements, making it difficult for ethics officials to tell whether his services were properly valued.