Merkel gave German tax money to Hillary’s failed campaign
German taxpayers unwittingly gave Hillary Clinton millions towards her election. The donation to the Clinton Foundation from Germany's taxpayers on behalf of Angela Merkel came at the height of the US elections.
Published: November 29, 2016, 1:34 pm
The German government has some explaining to do for the donation that appears under a heading “Donors and Grantors”.
Between July and September 2016, as much as $5 million were donated to the Clinton Foundation, a German newspaper Die Welt revealed. Die Welt questioned Chancellor Merkel motive as trying to influence the outcome of US presidential election.
In September, when the travelling press corps asked Clinton who her favourite world leader was, she did not hesitate to name German Chancellor Merkel as her top choice. And while Clinton was praising Merkel, the German government poured millions into the Clintons.
Hillary said on board her plane: “One of my favourites is Angela Merkel because I think she’s been an extraordinary, strong leader during difficult times in Europe, which has obvious implications for the rest of the world and, most particularly, our country.
She was less than subtle about her choice: “And I hope I’ll have the opportunity to work with her in the future.”
According to a newly surfaced donor list, the Clinton charity received around $5 million from Germany’s Ministry for Environment. Ministry’s spokesperson said that they had “very positive experience” with the Clinton Foundation and the millions of dollars diverted to the Clintons were going to planting trees in countries like India, Mexico, and Vietnam.
“Why does a Ministry support the election campaign of a US presidential candidate?” asked Vera Lengsfeld — former civil rights activist and German parliamentarian — in her blog. “It seems German taxpayers unwittingly financed Hillary Clinton’s election campaign.”
Lengsfeld is the daughter of an East German Stasi officer.
The total amount of German taxpayer contributions to Clinton Foundation is not yet known. It is still unclear if the Merkel government made payments to the Clinton charity through other ministries or state-run agencies.
German newspaper Die Welt detailed the government transaction:
The newly released list of donors show that Federal [German] Ministry for Environment transferred millions to the [Clinton] Foundation. In the third quarter of 2016, at the height of [Clinton’s] campaign, German taxpayers gave up to five million dollars to the family foundation.
The German Federal Ministry for the Environment has denied that the donation was linked to the election. It “categorically denied” the claim and said the said amount relates to money provided for “financing under the International Climate Protection Initiative (ICI)”.
The ministry also claimed the public funds served to “support forestry and landscape renaturation in East Africa”. Barbara Hendricks, the Federal Environment Minister’s spokeswoman, said of the Africa deal: “This is a project that is carried out directly by the Clinton Foundation in Kenya and Ethiopia with German co-financing.
“The experiences with the Clinton Foundation have been positive so far.
“Examination of the project so far has not led to any complaints.”
German taxpayers are this funding Clinton Foundation projects that involve the “restoration of forest ecosystems” in India, Kenya, El Salvador, Mexico, Vietnam, Uganda and Peru – according to reports.
Since 1997, the Clinton Foundation has collected an estimated $2 billion from corporations, rich donors, and foreign governments. State and non-state actors from Qatar, Saudi Arabia and China paid large sums to obtain influence.
Foreign donations — or as the Clintons affectionately calls them, “gifts” — have evaporated since Clinton lost her presidential bid, with a sudden dip in interest for “tree planting” activity in far away places.
The Foundation has also garnered support from former British prime ministers Tony Blair and Gordon Brown. Former US president Bill Clinton founded the Clinton Foundation after he left office in 2001.
Members of Merkel’s government have made no effort to hide their disgust for Trump. Right before the US election, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier called Republican candidate a “hate preacher”.
Vice-Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel warned US voters against electing Trump. Following Trump’s win, German Justice Minister Heiko Maas tweeted that the world was about to be turned on its head, while Merkel lectured Trump on gender, racial, and religious equality.
Only the leader of the German state of Bavaria, Germany’s largest state and which has one of the largest economies in Europe, wrote to the US president-elect to congratulate him on his victory and said he would be welcome “any time” in his state capital Munich.
Significantly, Seehofer suggested Trump could attend the city’s annual international security conference in February, just weeks after his inauguration as US president on January 20.
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