Hillary Clinton’s presidential run
is prompting new scrutiny of the Clintons’ financial and charitable affairs—something that’s already proved problematic for the Democratic frontrunner, given how closely these two worlds overlap. Last week, the New York Times examined
Bill Clinton’s relationship with a Canadian mining financier, Frank Giustra, who has donated millions of dollars to the Clinton Foundation and sits on its board. Clinton, the story suggests, helped Giustra’s company secure a lucrative uranium-mining deal in Kazakhstan and in return received “a flow of cash” to the Clinton Foundation, including previously undisclosed donations from the company’s chairman totaling $2.35 million.
Giustra strenuously objects to how he was portrayed.... “We’re not trying to hide anything,” he says. There are in fact 1,100 undisclosed donors to the Clinton Foundation, Giustra says, most of them non-U.S. residents
who donated to CGEP...
The reason this is a politically explosive revelation is because the Clinton Foundation promised to disclose its donors as a condition of Hillary Clinton becoming secretary of state. Shortly after Barack Obama was elected president in 2008, the Clinton Foundation signed a “memorandum of understanding” with the Obama White House agreeing to reveal its contributors every year. The agreement
stipulates that the “Clinton Giustra Sustainable Growth Initiative” (as the charity was then known) is part of the Clinton Foundation and must follow “the same protocols.”
It hasn’t. Giustra says that’s because Canada’s federal privacy law forbids CGEP, a Canadian-registered charity, from revealing its donors.... [but] Canadian tax and privacy law experts were dubious of this claim. Len Farber, former director of tax policy at Canada's Department of Finance, said he wasn't aware of any tax laws that would prevent the charity from releasing its donors' names. "There's nothing that would preclude them from releasing the names of donors," he said. "It's entirely up to them."
Mark Blumberg, a charity lawyer at Blumberg Segal in Toronto, added that the legislation "does not generally apply to a registered charity unless a charity is conducting commercial activities