New Hampshire Attorney General Gordon MacDonald should do what his Republican counterpart in Arkansas, Leslie Rutledge, and his Democrat counterparts, Eric Schneiderman in New York and Xavier Becerra in California seemingly won’t. He should investigate the required state public filings of the charity started Oct. 23, 1997, and originally known as The William J. Clinton Presidential Foundation.
MacDonald will find that directors of a purported charitable organization, using Federal Employer Number 31-1580204 and now known as The Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation, have attempted to hide the fact that the Clinton family illegally usurped control when the nonprofit’s bylaws were amended Nov. 2, 2013, to make Bill, Hillary, and Chelsea Class A directors for their remaining lives.
Why should MacDonald — or anybody else, for the matter, not named Clinton — care about that fact?
These heretofore unreported actions by the charity appear to violate numerous New Hampshire laws, including one that has been in effect since Jan. 1, 1998:
“In the interest of encouraging diversity of discussion, connection with the public, and public confidence, the board of directors of a charitable nonprofit corporation shall have at least five voting members, who are not of the same immediate family or related by blood or marriage [emphasis added].
According to the amended Clinton Foundation bylaws (Article 2, Section 2), the number of directors was set at a minimum of three and a maximum of 20.
However, the three Clinton family members were appointed as the only Class A directors and were given effective veto powers over all decisions.
Article II, Section 16 stipulated: “For the avoidance of doubt, any proposed action by the board of directors, which is not approved by a majority of the Class A directors with at least one Class A director as part of the majority of directors approving such action will not be adopted as an approved action of the board of directors.”
As written, this provision meant that, in an extreme case, where 17 Class B directors favored a proposition, the Clinton family could simply refuse to vote and the proposition would fail.
In between board meetings, Article II, Section 23 of the amended bylaws, an executive committee dominated by the Clinton family was given extraordinary powers:
“The executive committee shall have the power to transact all regular business of the board of directors during the periods between meetings of the board of directors, unless authority to transact any business may not by law be delegated to the executive committee.
“Without limiting the foregoing, the executive committee will have the exclusive power to (i) make all decisions related to the use of the Clinton name; and (ii) make decisions related to the renaming of the organization. All actions of the executive committee shall be reported at the next meeting of the board of directors … but shall not be subject to ratification by the board [emphasis added].”
It’s important to remember that, by statute and by agreement with the National Archives on Nov. 18, 2004, The William J. Clinton Foundation Presidential Foundation is required to remain a bona fide “public charity,” which a single family may not dominate.
How and when were amended bylaws approved and implemented? An initial federal tax return on Form 990 concerning 2012 was signed by Chief Financial Officer Andrew Kessel on Nov. 15, 2013 (see page 27).
In partial answer to question 1a of Part VII — “List all of the organization’s current directors” — three names were listed as directors as of Nov. 15, 2013: Bruce R. Lindsey, Terrence McAuliffe, and Chelsea V. Clinton.
On Nov. 14, 2014, an initial federal tax return on Form 990 concerning 2013 (see page 33) claimed that McAuliffe resigned from the board on Nov. 5, 2013, and therefore conflicts with sworn declarations made above in connection with the 2012 federal tax return.
In addition, Lindsey is described as having received $360,672 during 2013, in part, for serving as chief executive officer from January 2013 through July 2013, and as chairman of the board for all of 2013. This declaration is a violation of the New Hampshire law first cited above:
No employee of a charitable nonprofit corporation shall hold the position of chairperson or presiding officer of the board.
Eric R. Braverman is listed as a director beginning July 2013, a declaration that conflicts with sworn statements on the 2012 federal income tax return.
The remaining identified directors — Chelsea V. Clinton, William Jefferson Clinton, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Frank Giustra, Rolando Gonzalez Bunster, Eric Goosby, Nadeel Ibrahim, Lisa Jackson, Cheryl Mills, Cheryl Saban, and Richard Verma — are listed in a manner that suggests each of these individuals served as directors for all of 2013.
On Nov. 13, 2015, amended federal tax returns for 2012 and for 2013 were filed under penalties of perjury. These amended returns also failed to explain when the majority of listed directors actually served or that the three Clinton family members had been appointed Class A directors for their remaining lives, effectively controlling a supposedly publicly supported charity.
So what actually happened? Does the attorney general of New Hampshire now understand that the Clinton family illegally seized control of the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation and tried to keep this gross series of violations secret for nearly five years?
As bad as the preceding facts are, worse violations are seen considering unreported “transactions of pecuniary interest” involving the Clinton family, and numerous additional false statements, sworn under oath.
To be continued.
Charles Ortel, a retired investment banker, concentrates on exposing complex frauds in his new career as an investigator, writer and commentator. Since August 2017, he has been hosting the “Sunday with Charles” podcast and covering the Clinton Foundation case in depth, using publicly available source materials. To view his previous LifeZette contributions, go here.
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