Thursday, March 3, 2016


It's not what Hillary says but who she is saying it to and what they pay her to say it. There's much speculation about the content of these speeches. Why all the secrecy? What is being said behind these closed doors?

A better question to ask might be; Is all this speech making just another way of greasing palms for political favors?

Paying someone hundreds of thousands of dollars to spend  few hours at a podium droning on about this or that is nothing short of disingenuous and borders on taking bribes for political favors. Looking suspiciously like what Bernie Sanders calls a "rigged" corrupt system.

Hillary and Bill Clinton disclosed recently that they earned more than $25 million making speeches to business, trade and special interest groups over the past year or so; millions more went to the family’s foundation. What they actually told those groups is little known. In most cases, only sponsors, registered guests or paid ticket holders were admitted. Venues were monitored by the Secret Service and attendees warned to keep the content private.

In the two years between resigning as secretary of state and launching her presidential campaign, Hillary Clinton personally received $4.1 million in fees from financial institutions for closed-door talks that attendees described as friendly and light.

Clinton earned as much as $225,000 for every speech she delivered to financial institutions like Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank AG, Morgan Stanley, and Bank of America in the two years that followed her tenure as Secretary of State. The speeches have become a point of contention on the campaign trail, where her populist Sanders has accused Clinton of being too cozy with Wall Street.

When Hillary Clinton spoke to Goldman Sachs executives and technology titans at a summit in Arizona in October of 2013, she spoke glowingly of the work the bank was doing raising capital and helping create jobs, according to people who saw her remarks.

Clinton, who received $225,000 for her appearance, praised the diversity of Goldman’s workforce and the prominent roles played by women at the blue-chip investment bank and the tech firms present at the event. She spent no time criticizing Goldman or Wall Street more broadly for its role in the 2008 financial crisis.

 “It was pretty glowing about us,” one person who watched the event said. “It’s so far from what she sounds like as a candidate now. It was like a rah-rah speech. She sounded more like a Goldman Sachs managing director.”

 It wasn't just big Wall Street banks that ponied up "six-figures" or more for these private get together's with people possibly looking for favors from future presidential candidate Clinton.

For instance;

“I like to eat, and I think that most people do,” Hillary Clinton told the United Fresh Produce Association, opening a discussion of food’s role in diplomacy during her $225,000 presentation to the group last year.


“Our contract didn’t allow us to record or transcribe…and no posting to our website,” said Amanda Forster, spokeswoman for Premier Inc., PINC -0.40 % a health-care consultancy that paid Mrs. Clinton $225,500 for a speech in Miami last year.


In March of 2014 the Vancouver Board of Trade paid Mrs. Clinton $275,500 for a speech in the Queen Elizabeth Theatre. Chief Executive Iain Black told a Canadian Broadcasting Corporation interviewer the board’s leaders wooed Mrs. Clinton for months: “There were 33 proposals submitted from Vancouver…it’s been a year-long journey to bring her to the stage,” he said.


In October, Mrs. Clinton drew applause by opening her $225,500 speech at’s meeting with a shout-out for CEO Marc Benioff’s flashy high-tops: “I didn’t get a good enough look at Marc’s shoes yet, but you know they have their own Twitter account! What do you think, should I start @Hillary’sPantSuits?” she asked, in an amateur recording posted on YouTube.


The January 2014 speech, for which she was paid $325,500, was actually far longer. According to an association transcript, she described cars the family owned over the years, including her yellow Fiat, stolen in Arkansas in the mid-1970s; Bill Clinton’s 1960 burnt-orange Opel station wagon, and his “Chevy El Camino pickup truck with the bed in the back covered in AstroTurf.”


Mrs. Clinton pulled in nearly $500,000 for two speeches in a single day in Denver last summer, appearing with Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning at the International Dairy-Deli-Bakery Association, and speaking as part of a “Unique Lives & Experiences” speakers’ series.


Mrs. Clinton made her speech to the International Dairy-Deli-Bakery Association “relatable,” by discussing “some of the things she did for dairy” as a New York senator, says Mary Kay O’Connor, a vice president at the association.


In June of last year, a protester sneaked into Mrs. Clinton’s speech to the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries’ meeting in Las Vegas (fee: $225,500), and threw a shoe at her. Mrs. Clinton tried to save the situation by saying “my goodness, I didn’t know solid waste management was so controversial.”


Before declaring her presidential candidacy in April, Mrs. Clinton gave one last paid speech, covered by the media, to the American Camp Association’s tri-state conference in Atlantic City in March. Paid $260,000, she told counselors, “We have a huge fun deficit in America…Adults need camp too.”

Afterward, she sat down for a Q&A with Camp Timber Lake owner (and former New York Democratic Party chairman) Jay Jacobs, who opened on a serious note. “I first of all want the audience to know, because some have asked: Neither Secretary Clinton or anyone on her staff either requested or received any copies of the questions that I’m going to be asking her today.”

His first question: “How would camper Hillary Clinton like to spend her day at camp?”

“I love the outdoors. I think we all do,” Mrs. Clinton responded. The audience cheered.

What is it about these speeches that warranted such large sums of compensation? Or, does it go much deeper than that? 

Hillary supporters are surely expecting more than just a few hours at the podium for that kind of cash.

The question is are voters OK with a candidate that has made millions pandering to special interest groups but who claims she is a "people's" candidate.