Josh Earnest Dodges 10 Consecutive Questions About Clinton Foundation [VIDEO]

Alex Griswold Media Reporter
Font Size:

This has to be a new record: White House press secretary Josh Earnest dodged no less than ten consecutive questions in a span of five minutes, all about the damning allegations that then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton traded political favors in return for donations to the Clinton Foundation. (VIDEO: Hillary Clinton Dodges Question From Fox’s Ed Henry On Potential Perjury)

Let’s break it down, shall we?


ABC NEWS CORRESPONDENT JONATHAN KARL: Revelations regarding donations to the Clinton Foundation and actions taken by the United States government, I want to take the second part first. In hindsight, given what’s happened with Russia over the last year or two, was it a mistake to allow a Russian company to essentially corner the market on uranium in the United States? Was it a mistake to allow that transaction to go forward and allow them to control a fifth of the uranium supply in the United States?

EARNEST: I’m not familiar with that specific transaction. I know there’s been some reporting on that today. But I can take your question and see if we can get back to you on the specific transaction you’re talking about.


KARL: The memorandum of understanding that governed Hillary Clinton’s financial dealings, the financial dealings of the Foundation and her husband’s speaking fees. First of all, can you make that memorandum public, because I don’t think we’ve seen it?

EARNEST: This is a memorandum of understanding that resides at State Department. So you can ask them about their policy for disclosing or not.


KARL: We’ve asked them. I’m wondering, in the interest of transparency — this was supposed to be all about transparency — can we see that memorandum?

EARNEST: I think the goal of the memorandum was to insure that even the appearance of conflict–of-interest was avoided by insuring that there was greater transparency and greater knowledge about the contributions that were being accepted by the Clinton Foundation for charitable work they do. That was the goal of the memorandum.


KARL: Essentially, then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton promised that she would make public donations to the Clinton Foundation and also speaking fees for President Clinton. Isn’t it clear now that Secretary Clinton did not abide by her own memorandum of understanding to the president?

EARNEST: I’m not sure that’s clear. But you should go ask Secretary Clinton’s team about that.


KARL: I’m asking you. Because we read that Uranium One foreign company donated $2 million to the Clinton Foundation while she was Secretary of State. That would seem to be a pretty clear violation of memorandum of understanding as it’s been explained to us by you.

EARNEST: Again, for the details of this transaction, I’d refer you to either State Department or Secretary Clinton’s team. Obviously that’s not something that was reviewed at this level.


KARL: And we also know that previously $500,000 donation from the Algerian government went to Clinton Foundation while Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State. Again, isn’t this clear violation of memorandum understanding that said, first of all there would be an end to foreign donations and these donations to the foundation would be made public?

EARNEST: Again, I’d refer to Secretary Clinton’s team about that.


KARL: Can you check in on this as well? This is an understanding with the president, right?

EARNEST: But you’re asking about compliance of this matter and whether it lived up to standards that Secretary Clinton set for herself. I’d refer you to Secretary Clinton’s team to render some judgement on that.


KARL: One thing Secretary Clinton’s team referred us back to the White House on is whether or not any agency objected to that Uranium One deal, again that allowed Russians to take steps towards cornering the uranium market, which seems pretty significant. … Were any objections made by any agency in the United States government for the Russians making such a bold move …?

EARNEST: I will take a look and see if there’s information we can provide on that specific matter. I know the other thing that has been pointed out here, this is a decision other countries had the opportunity to weigh in on as well, and that seems like a relative fact in terms of the completion of the specific transactions.


KARL: I’m asking about our country.
EARNEST: Understandable. If there’s information we can provide, I’ll try to get that.


CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT JIM ACOSTA: I just wanted to follow up on john’s question about the Clinton Foundation. Do you feel and does the president feel that the Clinton Foundation and that Hillary Clinton provided sufficient information about the Foundation’s activities while she was secretary of state? Are you fully satisfied with the disclosure from the Foundation?

EARNEST: I haven’t been presented with any evidence to indicate that somehow there’s been insufficient information provided to the administration.

Follow Alex Griswold on Twitter