July 16th, 2009
10:28 AM ET
9 years ago

Hillary Clinton almost out of the red

Hillary Clinton's failed presidential bid against Barack Obama is now almost out of debt, according to reports filed with the Federal Election Commission.

Hillary Clinton's failed presidential bid against Barack Obama is now almost out of debt, according to reports filed with the Federal Election Commission.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Hillary Clinton is almost debt-free from her failed bid for the presidency.

Exactly one year after announcing it was a staggering $25.2 million in debt, her campaign reported Wednesday carrying its smallest amount of unpaid campaign bills since the former New York senator and current U.S. Secretary of State first began her presidential bid in early 2007.

As of June 30, Clinton's campaign organization owed $1.5 million in unpaid bills and had $2.5 million in the bank, according to a new disclosure report filed with the Federal Election Commission. Previously, the smallest amount of debt the campaign had reported was $1.6 million in March 2007, roughly two months after Clinton launched her presidential bid. As the race for the Democratic nomination grew more competitive, the campaign's debt grew steadily and reached its peak on June 30, 2008, just three weeks after Clinton suspended her campaign.

At that point, Clinton's campaign owed $12 million to almost 500 individual creditors and an additional $13.2 million to the candidate herself, who used her own money to help keep her operation afloat. Campaign finance laws forced Clinton to forgive the amount she loaned her committee because she was not able to repay the funds by the required deadline.

Wednesday's filing showed that the campaign now owes $1.5 million to one remaining creditor, Penn, Schoen & Berland, the political consulting firm that advised Clinton during the campaign. The firm's president, Mark Penn, had also served as Clinton's senior campaign strategist. At the start of 2009, the firm had been owed $5.4 million.

Clinton's campaign repaid Penn's firm about $808,000 since the end of May, almost all of it on June 29, the day before the end of the most recent reporting period. The bulk of this amount, $725,000, had been for "mail expenses," while $68,000 was for "web site" expenses, and another $15,000 was for various advertisements.

The campaign raised $541,000 in contributions from April through June and generated an additional $403,000 from both bank interest and from the rental of its campaign mailing lists to other organizations. Those organizations include the national Democratic party's Senate campaign arm, which paid $41,000, and the campaigns of Democratic Sens. Barbara Boxer of California and Chris Dodd of Connecticut, both of whom are up for re-election in 2010.

Two non-profit groups headed by people close to the former senator also rented the list: the "NoLimits Foundation," a policy and issue education organization headed by long-time Clinton adviser Ann Lewis, and the William Jefferson Clinton Foundation, created by the former president. Lewis' organization paid the Clinton campaign $200,000, while the former president's foundation paid $75,000. So far this year, President Clinton's foundation has paid Hillary Clinton's campaign a total of $349,000 in list rental fees.

A federal law known as the "Hatch Act" prohibits Clinton, as the secretary of state, from personally soliciting or accepting political contributions. The law does allow others to raise funds on Clinton's behalf, without her direct involvement.

Since ending her campaign, Clinton has received fundraising help from an all-star line-up of notable Democrats, including President Barack Obama, the man who defeated her for the Democratic nomination, Vice President Joe Biden, and family members such as President Clinton, her daughter, Chelsea, and her mother, Dorothy Rodham.

–CNN's Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.

Filed under: Hillary Clinton • Popular Posts
soundoff (92 Responses)
  1. Alicia

    Where are the PUMAs on this? There were 18 million of them. If all gave $1 it would have been taken care of.

    Just this morning on MSNBC/Morning Joe a guest suggested that Hillary should have not taken the SOS post. Meaning, she could run in 2012. I mean come chicks! When she cried it was 'weak'. When Palin quit it was 'weak'. Some women seem to feel that because of their connections they get in high positions and should get special treatment. Companies and television think it looks diverse putting a woman, any woman, in positions. That way, they don't then put Hispanic, Black or any other ethnic race. Believing the White woman covers their diversity. NOT.

    July 16, 2009 11:07 am at 11:07 am |
  2. phoenix86

    Hey CNN, Obama and the dems are now making the top tax rate 57% for those making over $250,000 (most small businesses).

    Why aren't you reporting that?

    July 16, 2009 11:07 am at 11:07 am |
  3. Brian G, Sugar Land, TX

    Who cares?

    July 16, 2009 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  4. Mental midgit from phoenix

    The Indians and Chinese should pay her debts off.Her husband did more for their people and jobs than he did for us.

    July 16, 2009 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  5. Ann

    Well sure... the interest payments on her other millions in the bank is catching up to her debts.

    July 16, 2009 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  6. Dennis

    Who Cares?

    July 16, 2009 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  7. Idiot_Pelosi

    I wonder what foreign country has given massive donations to the crooked Clinton campaign group?

    TIme for Hillary to go.

    July 16, 2009 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  8. daunt

    way to go hillary! ou betcha!!!

    July 16, 2009 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  9. Eunice Ervin


    Now maybe President Obama will let her do her job instead of him trying to do it and not suceeding. The problem he has to much on his plate is because he won't let his staff do their job.

    I'm supportive of President Obama but he needs to concentrate on the job loses and stop trying to wear everyone's shoes.

    July 16, 2009 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  10. WBN

    As a conservative, I was appalled by the way the media turned on the Clintons after their love for Obama sprang up; their trashing her hurt her campaign and, thus, her campaign fund-raising. Obama was cheap not to help pay her debt out of the Democratic fund chest which was still overflowing after the election, where he beat a man by only 7 points whose funds were half of Obama's.

    July 16, 2009 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  11. Gerald

    It must have also been Bush's fault she payed the debt off , Right ?

    July 16, 2009 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  12. Davis

    it's so hard for me to feel anything good about this woman because of her nasty behavior during the primaries against Obama. I still think appointing her was a very bad decision.

    July 16, 2009 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  13. vg

    Well, maybe it is time to ask how she managed to re-pay millions of $$.
    I owe 30 000$ and will take me at least 5 more years to pay them off. How come normal and honest ppl. dont have any money.
    There is something wrong!!

    July 16, 2009 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  14. Billy J in Texas

    I am glad to have pitched in a hundred dollars towards that end. Along with buy her and Bill's books for several of my friends and family.

    on a different note:

    I wish they would start a space program to shuttle all the haters (on both sides) to the moon and leave them there (without internet access)

    July 16, 2009 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  15. Sybille Rinkert

    I am wondering why I am able to read a long article today in the German SPIEGEL on Hillary Clintons speech at the 'Council on Foreign Relations' yet the speech is not shown on CNN. As interesting as the Sotomayor hearing might be, I think Hillarys statements on the foreign politics issues should not been disregarded and given as least the same importance other countries are giving it. Any reason for not giving her exposure?

    July 16, 2009 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  16. geecee

    Glad to hear her debt is almost paid up. I am sure many Obama supporters helped to get her debts paid. I know I contributed a small amount, but every bit helps. She would have been a great President also, but the Repugs would have destroyed her because of Bill. The Repugs hate Bill been more than they hate Barack (if that's possible!!)

    She is doing an excellent job as our Secretary of State. I am so glad she was able to help Obama out in such a special way and he seems to really appreciate her abilities and efforts in this area. I think she will be one of the best Secretaries of State we have ever had and will bet a lot accomplished. She is smart and diplomatic and very capable of handling difficult situations. She works well with others, to the surprise of many people I am sure. She is self-confident and does not feel at all diminished by the other "envoys" or diplomats that Obama is sending overseas. I am sure she can use all the help that she can get. The press just wants to make an issue of anything so they have something to "gossip" about. I wish her all the best and hope her elbow heals just fine.

    July 16, 2009 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  17. Joe-Wilmington, DE

    She owes 1.5 million; has 2.5 million in the bank.

    My balance sheet would read: owes zero; has 1 million in the bank.

    July 16, 2009 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  18. mypitts2

    I will never understand the hatred of Hillary. But anyway, I'm glad she's coming out of her debt. She's an asset to her party and nation.

    July 16, 2009 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  19. Jude

    If she was President we would definitely have had some better decision this far.

    July 16, 2009 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  20. Bubba

    Pat F, Reagan "chopping wood" and Bush "cutting brush" are contrived pictures. Would you feel better if she was dangling a beagle by the ears? Or standing in a flight suit under a banner saying MISSION ACCOMPLISHED? Just admit you don't like her, ok?
    And southerncousin, stop sounding so inbred. You give the South a bad name, can you even define "liberal?" Try night school or something.

    July 16, 2009 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  21. Joe in Austin

    When she loaned her own campaign $13M was when she should have dropped out.

    July 16, 2009 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  22. Expat American

    Gerald July 16th, 2009 11:23 am ET
    It must have also been Bush's fault she payed the debt off , Right ?

    However, it was Bush's fault that his education cuts have resulted in unintelligible posts authored by, well, you.

    July 16, 2009 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  23. Rob

    Apparently then she won't have to pay for this farce of a healthcare program the Dems are trying to ram down our thoats.

    July 16, 2009 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  24. Lilarose in Bandon, Oregon

    It is unfortunate that in the US people who don't win something are considered to have "failed."

    Hillary didn't fail, she is in a great place for the skills and talents she has. I am hoping history will prove this.

    Meanwhile, the media is getting smaller and smaller.

    July 16, 2009 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  25. Bill

    She's just a low down dirt ball just like the "CHOSEN ONE' the Socialist.

    July 16, 2009 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
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