The U.S. Department of Justice has launched an inquiry into whether the Clinton Foundation engaged in pay-to-play politics or other illegal activities while Hillary Clinton was serving as U.S. secretary of state, the Hill reports.
FBI agents from Little Rock, Arkansas, where the foundation was established, have taken the lead in the investigation and have interviewed at least one witness, law enforcement officials told the The Hill, while additional inquiries are expected in the coming weeks. Although the probe is focused on whether donors made donations to the foundation in hopes of securing certain policy outcomes or the Clintons promised or performed any policy favors in return for donations, it may also examine whether any tax-exempt assets were converted for personal or political use and whether the foundation complied with applicable tax laws.
In 2017, several GOP members of Congress urged Attorney General Jeff Sessions to appoint a special counsel to investigate issues surrounding the Clintons, and in November Justice Department officials suggested in a letter to Congress that some issues were being reexamined. Sessions subsequently testified that the appointment of a special prosecutor to investigate the Clintons and the foundation required a high legal bar that had not been met.
"Time after time, the Clinton Foundation has been subjected to politically motivated allegations, and time after time these allegations have been proven false. None of this has made us waver in our mission to help people," said foundation spokesperson Craig Minassian. "The Clinton Foundation has demonstrably improved the lives of millions of people across America and around the world while earning top ratings from charity watchdog groups in the process."