The Need for Disclosure

I wrote back in October about the lack of transparency surrounding donations from corporate titans and foreign princes to Bill Clinton's foundation. My view was that it made sense for liberals to push for this disclosure sooner rather than later so that we could see if there are any stinkbombs in those records before Hillary Clinton wins the Democratic nomination. According to The New York Times there's at least one, where in exchange for a $31 million donation to the Clinton Foundation, Bill Clinton helped a guy named Frank Giustra win some lucrative mining contracts from Kazakhstan's despotic government.

The only Hillary connection that the Times could uncover really highlights the lack of a Hillary connection here "Mr. Clinton’s public declaration undercut both American foreign policy and sharp criticism of Kazakhstan’s poor human rights record by, among others, Mr. Clinton’s wife, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York." Still, this obviously reflects quite poorly on Bill. And more to the point, it highlights the need for rigorous disclosure of this stuff. The Clintons are by no means unique in this regard -- the fundraising for the George W. Bush presidential library is super-shady. Normally, the relevant shadiness goes down during a president's lame duck phase so nobody really notices, but it's been a huge looming problem for years.