Political advocacy group Citizen Uprising has posted a list of every speaking engagement that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has made since 2013. The list not only includes her outlandish speaking fees, it also includes which companies she spoke to, with some surprising revelations.
Since leaving the State Department, Clinton has earned over $21 million in speaking fees. She averages over $200,000 per speech, which usually lasts only an hour. In all, she and her husband Bill have earned over $150 million in speaking fees since 2001, with some of that money being donated to the Clinton Foundation. While there is nothing wrong with earning money – in this case, a ton of it – Hillary’s current political ambitions have put those earnings in the spotlight, and called into question whether it compromised her stance on certain issues.
Consider this: after leaving the State Department, Clinton refused to take a stance on the building of the Keystone XL pipeline, a project that Democrats and environmentalists were squarely against. During that time, however, Clinton gave nine speeches to Canadian banks and commerce organizations that supported or would benefit from the pipeline, earning nearly $2 million in speaking fees from them. That included $275,000 to speak to the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal, $150,000 from the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, and $275,500 from the Vancouver Board of Trade. Those speech earnings, however, pale in comparison to the money she received from tinePublic.
tinePublic is an event planning company out of Calgary, who paid Clinton exactly $1 million for five speeches across Canada. The Huffington Post, however, reports that the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce and TD Bank, both of which have a significant stake in seeing the pipeline built, sponsored most of the tinePublic events. Perhaps, then, it isn’t surprising that Clinton herself refrained from coming out against Keystone during those years.
It wasn’t until Clinton officially began her race for the White House in 2015 that she changed her tune. After insisting that she wouldn’t take a stand on the issue, pressure from Bernie Sanders and environmentalists caused her to have a “come to Jesus meeting.” Or, in the case of radical environmentalists, a “come to Mother Nature meeting.”
In September of last year, Clinton finally came out against Keystone, about eight months after she gave her last paid speech to a pro-Keystone group. “I oppose it. I oppose it because I don’t think it’s in the best interest of what we need to do to combat climate change,” she said.
In the days leading up to her announcement, she actually blamed Barack Obama for the delay in her decision, perhaps the first time a Democrat has blamed Obama rather than George W. Bush for anything. “I have been waiting for the administration to make a decision. I thought I owed them that. I worked in the administration. I started the process that is supposed to lead to a decision. I can’t wait too much longer. And I am putting the White House on notice. I’m gonna tell you what I think soon because I can’t wait. I thought they would have it decided way, you know, way by now and they haven’t,” she said.