August 24, 2016

Paul Begala has had it with those who say Hillary Clinton somehow engaged in "Pay to Play" with the Clinton Foundation. The AP story is so full of holes, and the attacks so partisan, that the whole argument reeks of desperation both of a media that insists on a "both sides" narrative to the campaign, and the losing losers of Trump World, who want to grasp any straw that might give them an edge against the Next President of The United States.

Transcript via Media Matters, emphasis added:

ALISYN CAMEROTA (CO-HOST): Hillary Clinton, when she was secretary of state, met with 85 major donors to the Clinton Foundation. They gave something like in total $156 million to the foundation. How is that not paying for access?

PAUL BEGALA: How is it? How is it? I read the AP story.

CAMEROTA: They paid money and they got to meet with the secretary of state --

BEGALA: And who were they and what did they get? This really infuriates me. The Clinton Foundation keeps millions of people alive. The biggest person that they talked about in that story in the AP -- 40 paragraph story, I read it three times – 12 of those 40 paragraphs are about Hillary meeting with Muhammad Yunis. Muhammad Yunis is a Bangladeshi economist who won the Nobel Peace Prize, the Presidential Medal of Freedom from our country, and Congressional Gold Medal. He has done more to relieve extreme poverty in the world than any person alive. Of course America’s secretary of state should meet with him. That's nuts. There wasn’t one --

CAMEROTA: So every one of these 85 people the secretary of state would have met with?

BEGALA: Totally justified. Absolutely justified. No, this is wrong. In the whole wide world, there is only 17 million people who get lifesaving drugs, antiretroviral drugs. 17 million in the whole world, 11.5 of those 17 get them because of the Clinton Foundation. Bill Clinton ought to win the Nobel Peace Prize for this, and the fact that folks are trying to attack that foundation is really scummy.

CAMEROTA: Go ahead

COREY LEWANDOWSKI: Alisyn, I agree with Paul. This is absolutely wrong, this is pay for play. What we know is that one of the individuals she met with was the same person who held the fundraiser for her yesterday in California. He gave between $5 and $10 million to the foundation. He is on that list, has a meeting with her, has nothing to do --


BEGALA: Donald Trump gave $100,000 to that foundation. Was he doing pay for play?

LEWANDOWSKI: No one is questioning the work of the foundation. What they're questioning is, not the work of the foundation. Look, the Gates Foundation is partnering with in the Clinton Foundation doing some great work around the world.

CAMEROTA: OK, so what's the problem?

LEWANDOWSKI: What they're questioning is, when you cannot get a meeting through the proper channels, what you do is you go to the foundation, and then you get the meeting. Moreover, if the Clinton people are so concerned that this is a subset of a subset of the schedule, then release the entire schedule. This is what the AP reported, now the Boston Globe has called for the foundation to be closed, the Huffington Post has called for the foundation to be closed, and what the Clinton people said on their own is if she is elected president, Bill Clinton will step down from the foundation. Why won't he do it right this very second?

BEGALA: This is politics at its worst. This is a completely new standard, this is what the press and the Republicans do every time the Clintons run. It’s a different standard for the Clintons. I worked for Bill Clinton against George Bush Sr. He had the Points of Light Foundation, which he himself set up while he was president. And every single day as president, he named a point of light to promote his foundation. We thought that was great. We never attacked it. Just a second. Then the next time, we ran against Bob Dole. Bob Dole’s wife, Bob Dole ran the Senate. Bob Dole’s wife, Elizabeth Dole, very able person, was running the American Red Cross, a great foundation. We never attacked that. The press never attacked that either.

Begala is absolutely right. The media does this every time against the Clintons and only the Clintons. Begala should have brought up the millions that a sitting Vice President made in profits from a war based on lies from his own administration. But the media's collective amnesia on the Bush administration is utterly dependable.

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