Note: The packed room at the forum on foreign contributions included a representative of Moscow-based Sputnik. Assuming Vladimir Putin had time to read the paper this morning he is now aware of Take Back Our Republic.
Finance experts say that the Clinton Foundation_s acceptance of financial donations from foreign countries is an example of the unrestrained influence foreign players can have on US political candidates.
FEC Chair Ann Ravel was among those in the packed room Monday
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) _ The Clinton Foundation_s acceptance of financial donations from foreign countries is an example of the unrestrained influence foreign players can have on US political candidates, campaign finance experts told Sputnik.
|_It is just one example of how far money can seek to influence important American officials,_ Harvard University fellow and former White House Counsel on Ethics, Richard Painter said on Monday of Clinton Foundations_ foreign donors.|
US presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has come under scrutiny for accepting substantial foreign financial contributions to her family_s charitable organization, the Clinton Foundation.
According to public reports, the Foundation has raised nearly $2 billion since its creation in 2001.
Painter added that _there is no evidence_ that the Clinton Foundation _did anything illegal,_ and pointed to some of Clinton_s critics who are associated with similar charitable organizations and foundations.
The larger problem in US politics is that there is no way to account for the total amount of foreign contributions to US politicians, Painter explained.
|_We do not know where the money is coming from and they [anonymous donors] do have an influence on our political system,_ he said.|
Executive director of the civil education group Take Back Our Republic, John Pudner, explained that the problem of foreign donations to the Clinton Foundation _just keeps growing._
The foreign contributions to the foundation are _clearly the next best thing to giving a check to the presidential campaign,_ Pudner said.
He continued that the problem is US politics is that the amount of foreign contributions to US elections is not known. _Nothing is supposed to come in, and what we are seeing is the system is now set up where it can._
According to recent statements, the Clinton Foundation will continue accepting foreign donations during Hillary_s presidential campaign.
Under US election law, foreign nationals are not allowed to make financial or other material contributions to any US federal, state, or local election.
Loop holes in US election law, including exceptions made for corporate and non-profit organizations, have complicated the ability of US regulators to track foreign campaign contributions and potential foreign influence in US elections.