Hillary may be avoiding questions from the media now, but back in 2008 she responded to questions about a uranium mining deal and its connection to her husband and the Clinton Foundation.
It’s a story that has circulated again since the publication of Breitbart Sr. Editor-at-Large Peter Schweizer‘s book, Clinton Cash. In September 2005, Bill Clinton flew to Kazakhstan on a private jet owned by Canadian mining magnate Frank Giustra. While in Kazakhstan, former President Clinton praised the country’s autocratic President for his commitment to reforms just three months before an election. Then, one day after Clinton and Giustra left Kazakhstan, Giusta’s company signed a uranium mining agreement which would soon be worth billions. A few months later, Giustra donated $31 million to the Clinton Foundation.
The guts of that story were initially published by the NY Times in 2008. So while Hillary hasn’t addressed the story in its 2015 incarnation, she did respond to the allegations on Fox News Sunday back in February 3, 2008:
Chris Wallace: There was a front page story this week in the New York Times reporting that in 2005, your husband flew to Kazakhstan with a Canadian businessman, and he helped the businessman, according to the report, get a huge uranium deal by praising the dictator, Nazarbayev, who runs the country there, and then a few months later, that businessman, the Canadian businessman, made a $31 million donation to the Clinton Foundation. Now, whether it was a quid pro quo or not, are you going to tell your husband if you become president to cool it, to knock off those kinds of dealings?
Hillary Clinton: Well, Chris, that is a very one-sided and inaccurate description of what actually occurred.
Wallace: Well it’s basically what the NY Times said.
Hillary: Well, well let me set the record straight. He went to Kazakhstan to sign an agreement with the government to provide low-cost drugs for HIV/Aids, a growing problem in Central Asia. While he was there he met with opposition leaders and certainly spoke out about, you know, the hopes that we have to have a good relationship with that country. I have been on record, for many years, against the anti-democratic regime, calling for changes, standing against efforts that would bring them into positions of leadership in the global community without their making changes. So I think it is clear that I will stand on my own two feet. I will say what I believe and I will be a President who pursues policies that I think are in the best interest of our country.
Wallace: If I may just briefly follow up. That’s exactly the case. You have spoken out against Nazarbayev’s policies but President Clinton, former President Clinton, attended a dinner at which he in fact said he thought that Nazarbayev could lead an organization involved with regulating democracy around the world. And the question is raised, if you’re President and he’s the former President and he’s conducting and making statements that are out of step with your policy, isn’t that going to be awfully confusing?
Hillary: Well, Dick Cheney also went to Kazakhstan and praised the current regime. You know, you sometimes have to use both carrots and sticks to move these regimes to do what they should be doing. But I don’t think there’s any doubt about where I stand and what I intend to do. Obviously, these are difficult problems that require seasoned leadership. We have a lot of interests in that part of the world with natural resources and trying to make sure there’s a bulwark against spreading extremism. So it is important that you walk the line to try to be very firm about our support for democracy, to do everything possible to change these regimes, but recognize that these are not, you know, often easy calls, because the last thing we want is to see instability, perhaps the rise of an extremist regime, alliances with bad actors. So you know, I think that it’s something that I understand and I’ll be able to navigate through as president.