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Hillary Clinton Nabbed for Suspicious Fundraising Practices, Again

Sep 4, 2007

Republicans may have their corruption problems but as long as the Democrats keep the Clintons around, their party will also to continue to face well-deserved opprobrium for corruption. Just a couple of months after Hillary Clinton was caught filing inaccurate financial disclosure documents with the Senate, the New York Senator and Democrat presidential front-runner was nailed again last week in another scandal, this time involving her campaign fundraising activities.
Hillary Clinton Nabbed for Suspicious Fundraising Practices, Again (Wenn)
Hillary Clinton Nabbed for Suspicious Fundraising Practices, Again (Wenn)

According to the The New York Times: "Senator Hillary Clinton’s campaign said yesterday that it would give to charity $23,000 it had received from a prominent Democratic donor, and review thousands of dollars more that he had raised, after learning that the authorities in California had a warrant for his arrest stemming from a 1991 fraud case."

***

The donor in question is Norman Hsu, a businessman in the apparel industry who was a bit of a mystery man in Democratic fundraising circles until this week. While Hsu is one of Hillary’s biggest fundraisers, bringing in more than $1 million for Clinton’s presidential run, according to Federal Election Commission records, until 3 years ago, Hsu had never made a political contribution. He had gone from a virtual unknown in political circles to “one of the leading political fundraisers in the country.”

The question people began asking was what was Hsu doing before 2005? Well, now we know. He was defrauding investors and skipping town before he could be sentenced for the crime (one count of Grand Theft).

***

The Wall Street Journal reported Hsu’s connection to some suspicious fundraising activity when it uncovered the fact that one of Clinton’s leading donors, the Paw family, lived in a 1,250 square foot lime-green bungalow outside of San Francisco. William Paw, the 64-year old head of household is a mail carrier who earns $49,000 per year. His wife is a homemaker. And yet, the Paw family has donated a total of $200,000 to Democratic candidates since 2005.

How? One potential answer is Norman Hsu. Hsu once listed the Paw family home as his address, according to public records. He also recently hired William Paws’ son to work for several of his New York apparel companies. According to federal election records, the Paws’ family donations “closely track donations made by Norman Hsu.”

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The obvious question: Did Norman Hsu funnel donations through the Paw family, and others, in an effort to skirt campaign finance law? (The maximum donation allowed for an individual for 2008 races is $4,600.) Hsu denies he has reimbursed the Paw family for their contributions. However, the Journal reports, Kent Cooper, a former disclosure official with the Federal Election Commission, said the pattern of donations is definitely worth a look." There are red lights all over this one," Mr. Cooper said. You can bet there’s even more to this Hsu story.

“The travails of Mr. Hsu have proved an embarrassment for the Clinton campaign, which has strived to project an image of rectitude in its fund-raising and to dispel any lingering shadows of past episodes of tainted contributions,” The New York Times wrote. And what are some of those “lingering shadows?”

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The former first lady masterminded the illegal sale of trade mission seats in exchange for campaign contributions during the Clinton years. Our work led to her 2000 Senate campaign fundraising operation being fined $35,000 for failing to accurately report more than $700,000 in donations from another donor who came out the blue to give big money to her and other Democrats. (Our work also led to the federal prosecution of David Rosen, her Senate campaign’s national finance director.) And, then you have the whole Chinagate mess, which saw Hillary, her husband, and Al Gore all benefiting from the largess of Chinese communist-connected and other nefarious donors who gave money to them through straw donors and Buddhist monks. In fact, our client Johnny Chung, who was embroiled in this scandal, met with a Chinese general who gave him money to help Bill Clinton get reelected! Mr. Chung’s key contacts were in then-First Lady Hillary Clinton’s White House office.

Who is the Clinton machine kidding? This latest scandal is par for the course and deserves a full criminal investigation. The Bush Justice Department, to date, has shied away from aggressively pursuing the Clintons. Let’s the hope the change in leadership at Justice marks a change of attitude in pursuing Clinton corruption. For our part, our investigators are already on it.

Tom Fitton is President of Judicial Watch, a nonpartisan educational foundation that fights government corruption.

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