They say most politicians have a few skeletons in their closets. But current Democratic frontrunner and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has enough to start a small cemetery.
Even before “email-gate” and the tragedy in Benghazi, Clinton’s name was linked to several shocking scandals. And as she crisscrosses the country talking about her plans for the future, here are five of those scandals that she wants American voters to forget:
#1: The Whitewater real estate deal
Hundreds of acres of land for just a few hundred bucks? Not a bad deal, right?
The Whitewater scandal goes back to 1978, when former President Bill Clinton was still the attorney general of Arkansas. Bill and Hillary partnered with James McDougal, a real estate investor, and together they formed the Whitewater Development Corporation, which then purchased over 200 acres of land.
The Clintons were required to only put down a few hundred dollars, but stood to reap huge profits. But the deal eventually went sour, leaving the Clintons and partner James McDougal potentially on the hook for huge loses.
During Bill Clinton’s presidency, questions surrounded his involvement in the deal, and whether he and Hillary used their political power to escape their financial losses. Investigators suspected that Bill Clinton pressured former judge David Hale into make an illegal $300,000 loan for the Clintons’ and McDougal’s benefit. Many of the Clintons’ associates, including McDougal, ended up convicted of numerous charges.
#2 Vince Foster’s mysterious suicide
Controversy swirled around the mysterious death of longtime Clinton ally Vince Foster in 1993. While investigations ended up clearing the Clintons of any direct involvement in Foster’s death, critics have long been troubled by Hillary Clinton’s actions immediately after learning Foster had died.
According to journalist Edward Klein’s book The Truth About Hillary,
“The night of [Foster’s] death, Hillary launched one of the most shameful – and illegal – cover-ups of her entire career.
She sent two of her most trusted White House loyalists – Maggie Williams, the First Lady’s chief of staff, and Patsy Thomasson, who was in charge of White House administration – into Foster’s office to retrieve embarrassing and incriminating documents related to Whitewater and Hillary’s other personal affairs. While White House Counsel Bernard Nussbaum barred investigators from entering Foster’s office, Maggie Williams, Patsy Thomasson, and Craig Livingston, Hillary’s director of White House security, removed armloads of files and loose-leaf binders.
In addition, a White House staffer allegedly tampered with the titles of several memos and removed the First Lady’s initials in an effort to erase her role in improper behavior.”
#3: Hillary’s role in “Filegate”
During Bill Clinton’s presidency, scandal again rocked the White House when the director of White House Office Personnel Security – Clinton appointee Craig Livingston – was discovered having acquired FBI background information of several hundred Clinton political rivals.
Speculation at the time was that Hillary Clinton was perusing these illegal documents for dirt and leverage she could use on conservative Republicans.
The Clintons were able to avoid jail time when prosecutors couldn’t prove that they were directly involved in seeking these FBI background files on Republicans. However, FBI documents show that it was Hillary Clinton who pushed to have Livingston hired, even though he was under-qualified.
#4: The Travelgate firings
When Bill Clinton took office in January of 1993, there were a series of firings at the White House Travel Office — allegedly directed by Bill and Hillary — to help clear space to give their friends jobs. They even launched a bogus FBI investigation to justify the firings.
The wrath of the Clintons focused on director Billy Dale, who had served in the office through both Democrat and Republican administrations. Dale was eventually acquitted of all charges.
The Clintons replaced the fired staff with the Arkansas-based World Wide Travel, which had several political and family ties to the Clintons.
#5: Using the IRS as a political weapon
Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned? During Bill Clinton’s two terms in office, the women he allegedly had affairs with suddenly started having problems with the IRS.
Gennifer Flowers, Paula Jones, Juanita Broaddrick, and Liz Gracen were all audited during his administration.
White House Travel director Billy Dale, from the above Travelgate controversy, was audited, too.
Even Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly, a very public critic of the Clinton administration, says he was audited during Bill’s presidency… three times.