The White House is pushing back on reports about former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that suggest she used her influence to personally enrich herself and her family’s charitable foundation.
Press Secretary Josh Earnest insisted that the Clinton Foundation was doing “excellent work all across the world” and pointed to a “memo of understanding” detailing ethical guidelines that Clinton agreed to when she accepted her position as Secretary of State.
During the briefing, Earnest dodged pointed questions from reporters about whether the donations from foreign countries altered government policy while Clinton was head of the State Department. He asserted that as White House Press Secretary he wasn’t about to address every “spurious claim” made with “little evidence.”
“I know that there have been a lot of accusations made about this but not a lot of evidence,” Earnest said, adding that President Obama was “extraordinarily proud” of Clinton’s work for his administration.
“Clinton Cash,” the new book by investigative journalist Peter Schweizer, reportedly explains how the Clintons earned at least $136.5 million from 2001 to 2012. The New York Times this morning described the book as likely “the most anticipated and feared book of a presidential cycle.”
Earnest said he wouldn’t speak to whether or not the reports were accurate, saying that specific accusations should be addressed by Clinton campaign or the State Department.
“I’m not suggesting that you’re asking an illegitimate question,” he told the Wall Street Journal’s Byron Tau, who grilled him about the memo. “I’m just saying that for questions about what the actual text of the memorandum required, I’d refer you to the State Department because that is where that memorandum was signed and where it lives.”