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The Hillary Clinton pay-to-play ‘coincidences’ keep piling up

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By Doug Powers  •  April 9, 2015 08:51 PM

**Written by Doug Powers

Hillary Clinton is expected to announce Sunday that she’s going to run for president in 2016 (she wanted to announce on Saturday but Clinton protocol requires that all of Bill’s girlfriends get at least 24-hours advance notice of any major announcement).

Leading up to that announcement, here’s another total coincidence revolving around the Clinton Foundation’s acceptance of foreign donations:

The Clinton Foundation reportedly accepted millions of dollars from a Colombian oil company head before then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton decided to support a trade deal with Colombia despite worries of human rights violations.

The report in the International Business Times comes as Clinton readies an expected run for president. She’s been dogged by questions about whether foreign donations to her foundations could have influenced her official decisions.

The report centers on donations from Frank Giustra and the oil company that he founded, Pacific Rubiales. In a Wall Street Journal story from 2008, Giustra is described as a “friend and traveling companion” of former President Clinton who donated more than $130 million to Clinton’s philanthropies. He’s also a Clinton Foundation board member and has participated in projects and benefits for the foundation.

In 2008, Hillary Clinton said “I will do everything I can to urge the Congress to reject the Colombia Free Trade Agreement.” As a matter of fact, you might recall that Clinton’s 2008 campaign strategist Mark Penn quit her staff because of Hillary’s opposition to the Colombian trade pact (Penn apologized for promoting the deal against Hillary’s wishes).

But then Frank Giustra started carpet bombing the Clinton Foundation with millions and millions, and things magically changed:

But an IBTimes review of public State Department documents shows that as the Giustra-Clinton foundation relationship deepened, Hillary Clinton and the State Department never criticized or took action against the Colombian government for alleged violations of labor rights at Pacific Rubiales. Instead, Clinton’s State Department issued certifications in 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012 declaring that Colombia has been complying with human rights standards that are required under federal law for continued U.S. military aid to the country.

The Clintons make it difficult if not impossible to follow the money — at least that’s the case for those of us who aren’t foreign operatives with hacking skills — but hopefully when Hillary announces her 2016 campaign she’ll taunt reporters with the same challenge she issued in 1995:

**Written by Doug Powers

Twitter @ThePowersThatBe

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Categories: 2016 Campaign, Corruption, Hillary Clinton