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Clinton's Questionable Transition Team

- August 16, 2016

A Lobbyist, The Chair Of A Super PAC, And A Liberal Think Tank President Reinforce How Clinton Is A Part Of The D.C. Establishment

Today, Clinton Announced The Leadership For Her Presidential Transition Team, Which Includes Tom Donilon, Former Gov. Jennifer Granholm (D-MI), And Neera Tanden. "Hillary Clinton has tapped former Interior Secretary Ken Salazar to lead her White House transition team. Salazar will chair a team that also includes former National Security Adviser Tom Donilon, former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm, and longtime Clinton allies Neera Tanden and Maggie Williams." ("Clinton Taps Ex-Interior Chief For Transition," The Associated Press , 8/16/16)

TOM DONILON IS A FORMER LOBBYIST FOR FANNIE MAE, AND OVERSAW A "BACKDOOR LOBBYING CAMPAIGN" TO INTERFERE WITH AN OVERSIGHT INVESTIGATION OF THE MORTGAGE GIANT

Tom Donilon Is "A Former Top Lobbyist For Bailed-Out Mortgage Company Fannie Mae" From 1999-2005. "Hillary Clinton on Tuesday named a former top lobbyist for bailed-out mortgage company Fannie Mae to co-chair her presidential transition team. Tom Donilon's time at the company, 1999-2005, was at the height of the housing bubble, just before the market crashed in 2008." (Daniel Halper, "Clinton Hires Former Fannie Mae Lobbyist To Transition Team," New York Post, 8/16/16)

An Examination Of Fannie Was "Replete With References To Donilon." "A 2006 report on the federal 'special examination of Fannie Mae' is replete with references to Donilon, who worked at the firm from 1999 to April 2005, first as senior vice president and general counsel, and later as executive vice president for law and policy. The report quotes from a 2004 Donilon e-mail plotting efforts to resist federal regulators' attempts to force changes in Fannie Mae's executive structure." (Josh Gerstein and Abby Phillip, "Donilon's Resume: Policy, Law And Fannie Mae, Politico, 10/8/10)

Donilon "Oversaw An Aggressive, Backdoor Lobbying Campaign…To Undermine The Credibility Of A Probe Into [Fannie Mae's] Accounting Irregularities." "One of Obama's top transition team members, Thomas Donilon, oversaw an aggressive, backdoor lobbying campaign by mortgage giant Fannie Mae to undermine the credibility of a probe into the firm's accounting irregularities, according to a 2006 government report on the company." (Emma Schwartz and Justin Rood, "Obama Transition Member Oversaw Fannie's Lobbying," ABC News, 11/17/08)

  • Donilon's Lobbying Campaign Attacked The Office Of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight, Which Was Conducting The Investigation Into The Manipulation Of Fannie Mae's Financial Reports By Company Executives. "The effort -- which reportedly included attacks on the funding for the oversight agency, the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight, and an attempt to launch a separate investigation into OFHEO itself -- was ultimately unsuccessful, and regulators eventually discovered top Fannie Mae executives had been manipulating the company's financial reporting to maximize their bonuses." (Emma Schwartz and Justin Rood, "Obama Transition Member Oversaw Fannie's Lobbying," ABC News, 11/17/08)
  • OFHEO's Report Found That Fannie's Lobbyists "With The Knowledge And Support Of Senior Management" Attempted "To Interfere With OFHEO's Special Examination." "In the spring and again in the fall of 2004, Enterprise lobbyists, with the knowledge and support of senior management, used their longstanding relationships with Congressional staff to attempt to interfere with OFHEO's special examination." ("Report Of The Special Examination Of Fannie Mae," Office Of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight , 5/06)

Donilon Oversaw The Company's Lobbying And "Helped Paint A Rosy Picture Of Fannie's Financial Health To The Company's Board…A Picture That Was Ultimately Proven False." "But he did oversee its lobbying, and helped paint a rosy picture of Fannie's financial health to the company's board, OFHEO investigators concluded, a picture that was ultimately proven false." (Emma Schwartz and Justin Rood, "Obama Transition Member Oversaw Fannie's Lobbying," ABC News, 11/17/08)

Clinton Voted To Bailout Fannie And "Received Mind-Boggling Levels Of Financial Support" From The Mortgage Giant

In 2008, Clinton Voted For The Fannie Mae And Freddie Mac Bailout. (H.R. 3221, CQ Vote #186: Adopted 72-13, 7/26/08, Clinton Voted Yea)

Hillary Clinton "Received Mind-Boggling Levels Of Financial Support" From Fannie Mae And Freddie Mac. "But we now know that many of the senators who protected Fannie and Freddie, including Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and Christopher Dodd, have received mind-boggling levels of financial support from them over the years." (Kevin Hassett, Op-Ed, "How The Democrats Created The Financial Crisis," Bloomberg, 9/22/08)

Between 1989 And 2009, Hillary Clinton Received More Than $75,000 In Political Contributions From Fannie Mae And Freddie Mac - The Fourth Highest Amount Of All Legislators. (Lindsay Renick Mayer, "Fannie Mae And Freddie Mac Invest In Democrats," Center For Responsive Politics, 7/16/08)

NEERA TANDEN SUPPORT FOR TPP CALLS CLINTON'S OPPOSITION INTO QUESTION, AGAIN

Neera Tanden Is The President And CEO Of The Center For American Progress And The Center's Political Action Arm, Center For American Progress Action Fund. "Neera Tanden is the President and CEO of the Center for American Progress and the Center for American Progress Action Fund. Tanden has served in both the Obama and Clinton administrations, as well as presidential campaigns and think tanks." ("Neera Tanden," Center For American Progress, Accessed 8/16/16)

A 2012 Posting On CAP's Website Called The Trans-Pacific Partnership "An Ambitious New Trade Agreement That If Done Right Could Reap Benefits For The United States." "Representatives from the United States, Australia, Brunei, Chile, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, and Vietnam will meet in Dallas this week to continue negotiations on the Trans-Pacific Partnership, an ambitious new trade agreement that if done right could reap benefits for the United States." (Jordan Bernhardt and Sabrina Dewan, "Japan's Inclusion Makes The Trans-Pacific Partnership A Big Opportunity," Center For American Progress , 5/8/12)

  • 2012 CAP Post: "The TPP Is An Historic Opportunity. It Will Foster The Kind Of Regional Integration That Will Create Dynamic And Stable Domestic Economies In Each Of The Partner Nations." "The TPP is a historic opportunity. It will foster the kind of regional integration that will create dynamic and stable domestic economies in each of the partner nations. The TPP can ultimately be a net positive for Japan and the United States if the two countries can work out their differences." (Jordan Bernhardt and Sabrina Dewan, "Japan's Inclusion Makes The Trans-Pacific Partnership A Big Opportunity," Center For American Progress , 5/8/12)

Obama's U.S. Trade Representative, Michael Froman, Chose CAP In February 2014 For An Address On The Benefits Of Obama's Trade Policies, Including TPP. U.S. TRADE REPRESENTATIVE MICHAEL FROMAN: "At the end of the day, we need to assess what the world will look like with and without TPP. The world without TPP is a world with lower labor standards, weaker environmental protections and fewer opportunities for job growth in the U.S. In my view, a world with TPP is a world that is in the interest of America's workers and America's families." (U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman, Remarks At The Center For American Progress , Washington, D.C., 2/18/2014)

  • Tanden Introduced Froman At The Event, And Said The U.S. Should Look At New Trade Deals As "An Opportunity." CENTER FOR AMERICAN PROGRESS PRESIDENT NEERA TANDEN: "And I know that Ambassador Froman has made a commitment to raising labor and environmental standards, and we are looking forward to hearing those views today. Because I think that will really help address so much of the concern. So as we said, size up these trade deals, we really look for them as an opportunity to basically manage trade in the twenty first century so that they address our economy's needs, our competitiveness, and our workers' needs here today. We look forward to understanding better how these trade deals with ensure economic growth, and we look forward to hearing Ambassador Froman's remarks." (Neera Tanden, Remarks At The Center For American Progress , Washington, D.C., 2/18/2014)

On The Campaign Trail, Clinton Opposition To TPP Has Already Been Questioned

On The Campaign Trail Clinton Says She Would Reject "Bad Trade Deals…Including The Trans-Pacific Partnership." CLINTON: "We'll say no to bad trade deals and unfair trade practices including the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which does not meet my high bar for creating good paying jobs." (Hillary Clinton, Remarks At A Campaign Event, Raleigh, NC, 06/22/16)

Click To Watch

But In October 2015, Clinton Told The Hispanic Chamber Of Commerce That She Was "Against [TPP] Now" But Was Open To Flip-Flopping Back If "Changes" Were Made. MODERATOR: "So you're evolving on the issue?" CLINTON: "No, I am against it now, but we'll see whether there is any kind of significant changes. I mean look if the congress tomorrow adopted my entire you know working wage agenda I'd be pretty excited about that, but I think that will have to wait 'til I'm actually there as President." (Hillary Clinton, Remarks At The Hispanic Chamber Of Commerce, 10/15/15)

Click To Watch

In July, Gov. Terry McAuliffe, "Longtime Best Friend To The Clintons," Said He "Believes Hillary Clinton Will Support The TPP Trade Deal If Elected President." "Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, longtime best friend to the Clintons, said Tuesday that he believes Hillary Clinton will support the TPP trade deal if elected president, with some tweaks." (Annie Karni, "Clinton Friend McAuliffe Says Clinton Will Flip On TPP, Then Walks It Back," Politico, 7/26/16)

  • McAuliffe: "Once The Election's Over, And We Sit Down On Trade" I Expect Clinton Will Support TPP. "'I worry that if we don't do TPP, at some point China's going to break the rules -- but Hillary understands this," he said in an interview after his speech on the main stage at the Democratic National Convention. 'Once the election's over, and we sit down on trade, people understand a couple things we want to fix on it but going forward we got to build a global economy.' Pressed on whether Clinton would turn around and support the trade deal she opposed during the heat of the primary fight against Bernie Sanders, McAuliffe said: 'Yes. Listen, she was in support of it. There were specific things in it she wants fixed.'" (Annie Karni, "Clinton Friend McAuliffe Says Clinton Will Flip On TPP, Then Walks It Back," Politico, 7/26/16)

JENNIFER GRANHOLM HAS HELD SENIOR POSITIONS WITH TWO CLINTON-ALIGNED SUPER PACS

In August 2015, Granholm Joined Correct The Record As A "Senior Adviser" In Order To Act As A Surrogate For Clinton's Campaign. "Ms. Granholm will join Correct the Record, the group created by the Clinton ally David Brock. That group is coordinating with the campaign, and her new role as its senior adviser means Ms. Granholm can act as a surrogate for Mrs. Clinton. The campaign wanted her make such a move, according to one of the people briefed on the matter. Correct the Record has been trying to fill the gap in the number of surrogates, particularly women, it has to vouch for Mrs. Clinton in an increasingly contentious campaign." (Maggie Haberman, "Jennifer Granholm, Ex-Michigan Governor, Takes On New Role Supporting Hillary Clinton," The New York Times , 8/14/15)

  • Correct The Record Is "A Super PAC Coordinating With Clinton's Campaign." "Correct the Record, a super PAC coordinating with Clinton's campaign, is spending some $1 million to find and confront social media users who post unflattering messages about the Democratic front-runner." (Evan Halper, "Be Nice To Hillary Clinton Online - Or Risk A Confrontation With Her Super PAC," Los Angeles Times, 5/9/16)

Granholm Was Previously The Co-Chairwoman Of Priorities USA, A Super PAC "Raising Multimillion-Dollar Checks To Support Mrs. Clinton's Bid." "Until now, Ms. Granholm had been a co-chairwoman on the board of Priorities USA, the super PAC that's raising multimillion-dollar checks to support Mrs. Clinton's bid. Ms. Granholm was part of early efforts to raise funds for the group before Mrs. Clinton became a candidate in the spring. Priorities is barred by law from coordinating with the Clinton campaign." (Maggie Haberman, "Jennifer Granholm, Ex-Michigan Governor, Takes On New Role Supporting Hillary Clinton," The New York Times , 8/14/15)

Despite Saying She Would Like To See Super PACs Banned, Clinton And Her Allies Are Working To Raise Hundreds Of Millions Through Them

In October 2015, Clinton Said She "Wants To Get To A Point Where Those [Super PACs] Would No Longer Be Operating." CLINTON: "Now there are also super PACs that are out there. Some of them supporting me, some of them supporting other candidates. And I would hope that we would get to a point where those would no longer be operating. But that's not where we are today." (Hillary Clinton, Remarks At Community Forum, Mount Vernon, Iowa, 10/7/15) Minute: 0:51 -1:06

Clinton Said "She Wishes Super PAC Fundraising Committees Were Banned" But At The Same Time "Doesn't Intend To Disown The Ones Supporting Her" Currently. "Hillary Clinton said Wednesday she wishes super PAC fundraising committees were banned, but she doesn't intend to disown the ones supporting her while other candidates are benefiting from their own." (Tony Leys, "Hillary Clinton Says She Wishes Super PACs Were Banned," The Des Moines Register , 10/7/15)

  • The Des Moines Register Headline: "Hillary Clinton Says She Wishes Super PACs Were Banned" (Tony Leys, "Hillary Clinton Says She Wishes Super PACs Were Banned," The Des Moines Register , 10/7/15)

In August 2015, The New York Times Reported That Clinton's Super PACs Were "Soliciting Giant Donations" With Clinton's "Blessing." Mrs. Clinton's allied super PACs, mindful that to resist the tide is to drown, are soliciting giant donations in earnest now, with her blessing." (Amy Chozick and Eric Lichtblau, "Facing Money Gap, Hillary Clinton Slowly Warms To 'Super PAC' Gifts," The New York Times , 8/17/15)

In May 2015, The New York Times Reported That Clinton Would Be "Personally Courting Donors" For Priorities USA Action. "Hillary Rodham Clinton will begin personally courting donors for a super PAC supporting her candidacy, the first time a Democratic presidential candidate has fully embraced the independent groups that can accept unlimited checks from big donors and are already playing a major role in the 2016 race." (Maggie Haberman and Nicholas Confessore, "Hillary Clinton To Court Donors For Super PAC," The New York Times, 5/6/15)

  • Clinton And Her Allies Hope That The Super PAC - Priorities USA Action - Will Be Able To Raise As Much As $200 Million To $300 Million. "Her decision marks another escalation in what is expected to be the most expensive presidential campaign in history. Mrs. Clinton's allies hope that with her support, Priorities USA Action, the top Democratic super PAC, will be able to raise as much as $200 million to $300 million, on par with what the largest Republican organizations, such as the Karl Rove-founded American Crossroads super PAC and its nonprofit affiliate, spent in 2012." (Maggie Haberman and Nicholas Confessore, "Hillary Clinton To Court Donors For Super PAC," The New York Times, 5/6/15)

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