No, Eric Schneiderman’s disgraced exit should not open the door for Hillary Clinton to challenge President Donald Trump as the next attorney general of the Empire State, despite the trial balloons going up from loyal Clintonistas in the media and the geriatric wing of the Democratic Party.
Instead, the vacuum created by Schneiderman’s abrupt departure and the fact that his predecessor as attorney general, Gov. Andrew Cuomo, did little to attack corruption or boost the private sector, may usher in a true contest of constructive ideas inside New York at a time that a real New Yorker in the White House is proving that disrupting the Establishment is desperately needed. He may soon prove that his coattails will elect even more Republican candidates in surprising states.
Democrats should remember that President Ronald Reagan won New York in 1984, following a turbulent first year in the Oval Office, and today Trump is certainly compiling a record of accomplishments — mainly by honoring campaign promises and defying Washington’s conventional wisdom.
In utter contrast, Hillary was rejected in 2008 and 2016, so luring her back into fevered White House dreams for 2020 from a demoted perch inside state government seems a fool’s errand. Besides, the substantive argument to put Hillary in Albany is what, exactly?
The counterarguments are clear and telling. For one thing, she certainly cannot fix New York’s immense charity fraud problems because she is one of those problems. The last person New York needs as its chief law enforcement administrator is someone whose major credential is staying scant steps ahead of the law on too laxly enforced regulations for charities and solicitations.
Con artists, in politics and tied to charities, wrap themselves in gaudy, high-sounding themes, barrage any who might listen with frequent fundraising requests, and divert millions, even billions, of dollars away from deserving constituents or aid recipients, not to mention state, local and national treasuries.
While most of us appreciate there are few honest politicians, no thinking person truly believes that charity fraud is good — diverting money from organizations that actually help needy persons can mean you are stealing food from the hungry, medicine from the sick, or aid from victims of natural disasters.
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Clearly, too many supposed charities have been abusing the laws and hospitality of New York for too long — but the chief as-yet unprosecuted culprit is the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation. Ongoing records’ review shows that this entity and its many offshoots solicited funds for years while false and materially misleading filings circulated in the public domain.
Without securing required authorizations in advance from the IRS, Bill Clinton and others converted a Little Rock, Arkansas, presidential records repository and research center into an out-of-control, leaky, international slush fund for high living in the Big Apple and elsewhere, and for partisan activities, including political campaigns.
In New York and other places, Clinton charities operated from unregistered offices far outside the scope of their authorized tax-exempt purposes. And they have done so without credibly explaining private benefits derived by insiders, including the Clinton family and close political associates of long standing.
So, Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton do have serious and looming legal problems arising from reckless organization and operation of “their” charity complex.
What New York should do is reject the Clintons and send a clear message to charity fraudsters that they will be punished, and punished severely, should they dare to make this state a center for toxic, illegal activities.
Trump is restoring order. Skeptics, including diehard Clinton loyalists, might observe the changing landscape under Trump’s leadership, despite unprecedented and underhanded “resistance.”
Yes, the Clintons miraculously gulled the mainstream media and contributors to her last presidential campaign about the fact of a full-scale FBI investigation — not the mere “matter” of Loretta Lynch’s obfuscation — into her mishandling of classified information.
Documents recently made publicly available through the FBI Vault concerning this formal inquiry targeting the former secretary of state indicate it officially opened July 10, 2015, as shown here and here.
And yes, the Clintons also seem, somehow, to have blunted an investigation that involved Robert Mueller, James Comey and Rod Rosenstein into the Clinton Foundation and their alleged public corruption.
Publicly available documents on this investigation are also provided by the FBI Vault, show that it ran for approximately four years, and was apparently well-resourced, yet it failed to spot obvious charity, bank, wire, postal, and solicitation frauds, escalating from 2001 through 2005.
That said, an IRS investigation of the Clinton Foundation begun in July 2016 is likely maturing and cannot credibly miss overwhelming evidence suggesting massive and continuing, international charity frauds.
Moreover, since Jan. 4, 2018, the Department of Justice seems to have opened a new investigation into the Clinton Foundation, centering upon the period when Hillary ran the State Department and Bill and Chelsea ran the Clinton Foundation.
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) correctly wants to know whether President Barack Obama and his appointees, such as Lynch, impeded investigation into Clinton Foundation abuses.
Meanwhile, those who believe the Clinton Foundation and Clinton email scandals are likely intertwined wait with bated breath for Inspector General Michael Horowitz to release further details concerning the scope of his inquiry and its findings.
Is backing the Clintons prudent? With the spotlight upon Schneiderman’s alleged personal misdeeds, Cuomo must remember that he served as attorney general from 2007 through 2010, precisely when lawyers in his Charity Bureau failed to prosecute the many Clinton “charities” that flouted New York laws and have only grown larger afterwards.
Hillary Clinton and the Clinton family already have a raft of legal trouble in New York, across the United States, and potentially around the world.
The last thing Democrats and New York legislators should consider is installing such a conflict-prone person (and family) near the attorney general’s office, so, in the end, that certainly will never happen.
Meanwhile, how many disruptors for greater good are noticing the yawning vacuum of power in New York, still a key Electoral College state?
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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