It has been widely reported that Hillary Clinton’s faltering presidential campaign has started the fall season with “new efforts to bring spontaneity to a candidacy that sometimes seems wooden and overly cautious.”
To test this new effort, here are some new questions pertaining to an old issue about the Bill, Hillary, and Chelsea Clinton Foundation and the all-important IRS Form 990.
There is no doubt that just asking these questions will make Hillary squirm — because the answers have the potential to derail her efforts to become our nation’s first female president.
If you recall, back in April, there were days of explosive headlines after Reuters reviewed the Clinton Foundation’s 990 forms and “found errors in how they reported donations from governments.” As a result, a Clinton Foundation spokesman said, “We are prioritizing an external review to ensure the accuracy of the 990s from 2010, 2011 and 2012 and expect to refile when the review is completed.”
In other words, “Oops, you caught us cooking the books; sorry about that.”
Now, five months later, it is time to revisit the Form 990 question and ask Hillary Clinton, who is listed as a director of the foundation, when her foundation will refile these important forms with the IRS.
You may be asking, What is IRS Form 990, and why is it so important?
Form 990 provides an overview of a nonprofit organization’s activities, along with detailed financial information about revenues and donors. The form is needed to justify an organization’s maintaining its tax-exempt status. It must be filed annually.
The Clinton Foundation’s revised 990s should provide details about the exact amount of funds that foreign governments contributed to the foundation while Mrs. Clinton was secretary of state. Amazingly, this information about the breakdown of foreign-government funding was omitted from the 990s for the three years in question.
The political reality is that the longer the foundation waits to refile the 990s the more the forms will be highly scrutinized and entangled in the presidential campaign.
These refiled 990s have the potential to be political dynamite setting off new allegations of “pay to play” and influence buying with Hillary’s State Department, raising once again the frequently asked question whether she can be trusted to be president of the United States.
Another question for Mrs. Clinton, as a foundation director: When will Form 990 be filed for the year 2014?
On the Clinton Foundation website, the original 990s stop at 2013.
Since this IRS form is supposed to be filed annually, one would think that the 990 for 2014 would be available by September 2015, especially since one of the foundation’s directors happens to be running for president and would want to set an example for all Americans by following IRS rules.
Given that Hillary was laying the groundwork for her presidential run in 2014, Form 990 for that year should be chock-full of interesting donor information for the media and her political opponents to dissect.
A related question that Mrs. Clinton should be asked is: What will become of the Clinton Foundation if she should be elected? For example, will Bill Clinton, while living in the White House, be soliciting contributions from high-net-worth individuals, corporations, and governments that conceivably could be paying to do business with the Clinton administration?
Finally, in the five months that have elapsed since the foundation said it was going to refile its 990s, has the IRS been pressuring the foundation for the revised forms and asking when they plan on filing the 990 for 2014?
We do not know what kind of relationship the foundation has with the IRS, but it was Reuters, a foreign news organization, that found the problems with past years’ 990s.
With the Clintons’ history, we know that rules are only for “little people.” Now, do the rules for honest and timely filings of IRS Form 990 apply only to “little organizations”?
Cross-posted at National Review Online