As secretary of state, Hillary Clinton sought to help a friend of her wealthy hedge fund son-in-law who was seeking a meeting with the State Department and Clinton herself to discuss a deep sea mining company he had invested in, State Department records show.
In a May 25, 2012 email, an investor named Harry Siklas emailed Clinton’s rich son-in-law, Marc Mezvinsky, to see about setting up a meeting with someone at the State Department to discuss Neptune Minerals, a sea floor massive sulfide mining company founded in 2011.
Siklas told Mezvinsky, who married Chelsea Clinton in 2010, that Neptune Minerals was poised for great things. He also touted an investment that Goldman Sachs had made in the company, which had underwater tenements in the South Pacific.
“I introduced them to GS and the bankers took them on as a client,” Siklas wrote.
Both Siklas and Mezvinsky had worked at Goldman Sachs, which itself has been cozy with Clinton. The Wall Street behemoth was the fourth largest corporate donor to Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign. The company has also donated at least $1 million to the Clinton Foundation.
Goldman’s CEO, Lloyd Blankfein, is also an investor in Eaglevale Partners, the hedge fund that Mezvinsky co-founded in 2011 after leaving the investment bank.
“There is a favor I need to ask, and hopefully it will not put you out, as I’m not one to ask for favors typically,” Siklas wrote to Mezvinsky.
“I need a contact in Hillary’s office.”
Siklas, who described himself as a “passive investor” in Neptune, touted the company and its co-founder, Josh Adam.
Siklas said that he and Adam hoped to meet with State Department officials, including Clinton, to discuss deep sea mining “and the current legal issues and regulations” surrounding it.
“[We] would feel very fortunate to have someone’s ear on this topical issue, with the hope that at some point we get in front of the Secretary herself,” Siklas wrote. “However, for now, if you, or your better half, know someone in her office who would at least READ an email or take a fifteen minute call, it would be a huge boon.”
It is unclear what came of the inquiry. Neptune Minerals did not respond to a request for comment. Nor did the Clinton campaign. An email sent to an address listed for Siklas was returned undeliverable.
The State Department’s records do not include any response from Clinton to either Mezvinsky or Siklas. Instead, she forwarded the email on Aug. 22, 2012 to Thomas Nides, then the deputy secretary of state for management and resources.
“Could you have someone follow up on this request which was forwarded to me?” Clinton asked.
“I’II get on it,” the aide replied.
The email raises two key issues.
First, it is unclear why there is no record of Clinton being forwarded the email that Siklas sent to Mezvinsky. Clinton wrote in her email to Nides that she was forwarded the email from Siklas to her son-in-law. If Clinton had turned over all work-related emails that she has sent or received — as she has repeatedly claimed — it would be expected that she had an email sent directly to her inbox with Siklas’s email attached.
But perhaps more importantly, the email shows that people close to Clinton had the inside track in pushing her their pet projects — a pattern that has been on display with nearly every monthly release of Clinton emails.
As a Daily Caller investigation showed, former Ambassador Joseph Wilson frequently emailed Clinton to lobby for an American power company in which he was involved. The company, Symbion Power, was awarded a contract by the Millennium Challenge Corporation, a quasi-government agency which Clinton chaired when she was in office. (RELATED: After An Email To Hillary, Company Directed By Ambassador Joe Wilson Received Lucrative African Contract)
Other emails showed that in 2009, after then-Iowa Sen. Tom Harkin repeatedly pressed Clinton and her aides for a job for his daughter at the State Department, she was hired at the agency’s Office of War Crimes Issues. (RELATED: After Lobbying Hillary, Democratic Senator’s Daughter Was Hired At The State Department)
Harkin provided Clinton with a political boost when he endorsed the Democratic presidential candidate over the summer.
Clinton also received business pitches from her longtime friend, Sidney Blumenthal. Blumenthal frequently emailed intelligence reports to Clinton pushing for regime change in Libya. At the same time he was emailing Clinton, Blumenthal was consulting for Osprey Global Solutions, a defense contractor that stood to benefit from the removal of Libyan dictator Moammar Gaddafi. Clinton was one of the most vocal supporters within the Obama administration seeking Gaddafi’s ouster.
The Mezvinsky email — and the other business pitches sent to Clinton — would not have come to light if Clinton had had her way. She held onto her State Department emails for nearly two years after leaving office, preventing the federal records from being made available to Freedom of Information Act requests and congressional inquiries.