Hillary Clinton on her 'dead broke' misstep: 'I regret it'
July 29th, 2014
11:40 AM ET
5 months ago

Hillary Clinton on her 'dead broke' misstep: 'I regret it'

Washington (CNN) – Hillary Clinton first opened the can of worms on her sizable wealth during the first interview of her book tour on June 9.

Nearly two months later, Clinton is still being asked about it and tells Fusion that she regrets telling ABC's Diane Sawyer that her family was 'dead broke' when they left the White House in 2001.

"Well, I regret it. It was in-artful," she told Fusion's Jorge Ramos in a portion of an interview posted Monday night. "It was accurate but we are so successful and we're so blessed by the success we've had and my husband has worked incredibly hard."

Clinton then pivoted from her personal wealth and previous comments to what she hopes to do in the future for people struggling to get out of debt.

"What I worry about is not my family. I worry about other families in our country who feel like they're running in place, they're not getting ahead or maybe they are falling backwards," Clinton said. "What I want to do–and this is what Bill has always done since the very beginning of his public life–is to try to create more ladders of opportunity for more Americans so that they can have the same opportunities that Bill and I have had."

Clinton's comments about being “dead broke” and in debt in 2001 rang hollow to many given the fact the family had two massive book advances in the works, a sizable government pension, and the prospect of making millions on the speaking circuit in their future.

Clinton has called her comments in-artful a number of times, including the day after her first interview.

"That may have not been the most artful way of saying that you know Bill and I have gone through a lot of different phases in your lives," Clinton said at an event with Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

Both Bill and Hillary Clinton, however, have accurately stood by the fact that their family was in debt after leaving the White House. According to financial disclosure forms, the Clintons had between $2.28 million to $10.6 million in debt in 2001.

Former President Bill Clinton recently told an audience that that amount of debt "would qualify as being dead broke."

But the Clintons didn't stay in debt for long.

A CNN analysis of the family's financial records in early 2013 showed that Bill Clinton had earned $106 million from paid speeches since leaving the presidency behind. Bloomberg reported earlier this month that Hillary Clinton has earned $12 million speaking and writing since leaving the state department in 2013.

Questions about Clinton's wealth have persisted for the last two months. Republicans seized on the talking point in an effort to paint the former secretary of state and possible 2016 presidential hopeful as out of touch with everyday Americans, and reporters have continued to press to see how much money the Clintons have made since leaving public service.

Ramos, whose full interview with Clinton will air Tuesday night, also asked Clinton if she knew her net worth.

"Within a range," Clinton said. "We have two very nice houses which we are very proud of."

When asked if the figure was in the millions, Clinton responded, "Yes, indeed."

- CNN's Robert Yoon contributed to this report.


Filed under: Hillary Clinton
soundoff (53 Responses)
  1. Gunderson

    Aw, Humm,
    Old Gunderson see Hillary need Teleprompter keep stories straight. She probably duck all hard questions from press or (F) up again!

    July 29, 2014 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  2. They ought to change from the elephant to the hippo...

    Ok, Freedumb... I'll bite... How much more damaging was it to your friend that he was killed due to a terrorist attack, rather than a video?

    July 29, 2014 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  3. anonymous

    no need to apologize hillary.... we realize your brain injury makes you say an do dumb things.

    July 29, 2014 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  4. Rudy NYC

    tom l posted July 29, 2014 01:09 pm

    Rudy NYC

    "Liberals will go nuts and point to phony repubs and their "family values". The opposite is true of throngs like this. They are all phony. Can't you just admit that?"
    ---
    Fail. You're projecting your own reactions, what you might do in the same situation, onto others. BTW, what "throngs" are you talking about? Why do so many of your posts sound like the tail end of a conversation?
    ========
    Rudy, you are so boring and monotonous. It's the same drivel from you day in and day out. This is why you have jumped the shark and are just irrelevant. You are tiresome and worn out and I'm just over having any conversations with you.
    I will say that this is an article about Hillary Clinton so I'm guessing that is why smith made his comments. I believe I have seen him poke at repubs and their family values phoniness, as well, but I could be wrong. No doubt he would agree with me on that and the analogy is perfectly relevant and makes sense.

    But, of course, you must point to something irrelevant and make some attack at me about "projecting my own reactions".
    ---------------------------–
    Uh, excuse me. Did you say "make some attack at me" when the attack was directed at "smith"? You're busted once again, "tom l". You have never fooled me with your multiple postings.

    "Nice try, but gotcha self."

    July 29, 2014 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  5. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Liberals will go nuts and point to phony repubs and their "family values". The opposite is true of throngs like this. They are all phony. Can't you just admit that?
    -----------------------------------------------------
    What the hell are you talking about tom l?
    What does this have to do with "family values"?
    Why do you insist on trying to rabble-rouse by coming up with totally ad hoc, non-existent arguments?
    Adn what in the hell are you talking about tom l????!

    July 29, 2014 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  6. Ol' Yeller

    @smith

    Clinton was trying paint herself as the "Im just like you" person. This is a common mistake among liberals in politics as well as liberals with fame. This same mistake took down Micheal Moore (when he tried to say he wasn`t in the 1%, that and he was exposed for all his lies).

    Yes, a very common mistake among liberals... trying to place themselves in the same shoes as an average person. Whereas, Obama came from the background of being raised by a single mom, and Clinton grew up in a small town and also came from a broken home... at least these fioks were there once...
    republicants on the other hand just look down their noses at the dirty poor, whom they see as mostly black or brown. conservatives like mccain, who famously answered when asked what amount of money made a person 'wealthy' and he said,, "Oh, I don't know, 7 million dollars?". Or, romney flippantly throwing out a 10 thousand dollar bet or putting the car elevator in his new home... they are simply out of touch and cannot even begin to place themselves in the regular folks shoes... because they have NEVER been there.
    Most republicants were born on third base and think they hit triple. For the small number who did actually have a more humble background (like, ryan) well... they are the worst. Wanting to yank away the very safety net which kept them and their family from sleeping under a bridge.
    I got mine... but I won't lift a finger to ensure you have the same level playing field I myself enjoyed.
    Now vote for me, you stupid rubes!
    (red states)- "Dehrrrr.... okay.

    July 29, 2014 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  7. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    @ tom l
    So just keep up with your mindless, same stuff every day comments that have no relevance and foster zero discussion.
    -----------------------------------------------------
    In light of your totally random post (July 29, 2014 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm ) it would be fair to say that you're projecting again babe.
    Boy you kill me sometimes....!

    July 29, 2014 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  8. Silence DoGood

    @anonymous
    no need to apologize hillary.... we realize your brain injury makes you say an do dumb things.
    -----------–
    ding ding ding – conspiracy alert – thanks for parroting the made up Rush story.
    You know even he retracted this long ago? But you keep on – eyes closed.

    July 29, 2014 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  9. Tampa Tim

    Being brain dead can no longer be an excuse for RWNJ stupidity.

    July 29, 2014 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  10. tom l

    "Fail. You're projecting your own reactions, what you might do in the same situation, onto others. BTW, what "throngs" are you talking about? Why do so many of your posts sound like the tail end of a conversation?"
    =================

    This was your attack on me, tom l.

    Rudy NYC

    "Liberals will go nuts and point to phony repubs and their "family values". The opposite is true of throngs like this. They are all phony. Can't you just admit that?"
    -
    Fail. You're projecting your own reactions, what you might do in the same situation, onto others. BTW, what "throngs" are you talking about? Why do so many of your posts sound like the tail end of a conversation?
    ========
    Rudy, you are so boring and monotonous. It's the same drivel from you day in and day out. This is why you have jumped the shark and are just irrelevant. You are tiresome and worn out and I'm just over having any conversations with you.
    I will say that this is an article about Hillary Clinton so I'm guessing that is why smith made his comments. I believe I have seen him poke at repubs and their family values phoniness, as well, but I could be wrong. No doubt he would agree with me on that and the analogy is perfectly relevant and makes sense.

    But, of course, you must point to something irrelevant and make some attack at me about "projecting my own reactions".
    ---------–
    Uh, excuse me. Did you say "make some attack at me" when the attack was directed at "smith"? You're busted once again, "tom l". You have never fooled me with your multiple postings.

    "Nice try, but gotcha self."

    =======

    And this is your attack on me again. I would've thought that after some of smith's posts from the past few days that are completely opposite of my feelings you would give up on that line, but, alas, you have nothing else.

    And can the gang stop stealing my lines and verbiage, for once? I have noticed that since I started saying you were projecting that several of you are now using that word a lot. Goodness me, at least be original.

    July 29, 2014 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  11. anonymous

    Silence DoGood

    @anonymous
    no need to apologize hillary.... we realize your brain injury makes you say an do dumb things.
    ---––
    ding ding ding – conspiracy alert – thanks for parroting the made up Rush story.
    You know even he retracted this long ago? But you keep on – eyes closed.
    --–

    conspiracy??? you apparently don't even know the meaning of the word.

    then please do explain all of hillary clinton's lies and dumb statements. she is starting to rival obama on lying and joe biden on stupid statements.

    July 29, 2014 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  12. Deep Fried Beans

    - Claims she "landed under fire in Bosnia"
    – Tears into an NPR reporter who called her out on her gay marriage flip/flop
    – claims she was "dead broke" after she left the White House

    Credibility = ZERO

    "Why did you sting me?! Now we will both drown!"
    "What did you expect... I am a scorpion"

    July 29, 2014 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  13. Tampa Tim

    Please stop trying to engage Taliban Tom.

    July 29, 2014 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  14. Rudy NYC

    And this is your attack on me again. I would've thought that after some of smith's posts from the past few days that are completely opposite of my feelings you would give up on that line, but, alas, you have nothing else.

    And can the gang stop stealing my lines and verbiage, for once? I have noticed that since I started saying you were projecting that several of you are now using that word a lot. Goodness me, at least be original.
    ===========================================================================
    We believe in freedom of speech. You don't own the copyright on a word. Personally, I have not seen occasion for you to use the word "project". The fact is, you do project, tom. You're always posting about mad and upset liberals will get when the read or hear blah, blah, blah, when it is you who is admittedly hot-headed and tended to overreact.

    BTW, your posts are sometimes too long, rambling, and confusing to read. I fell victim to it. You changed the subject too many times in a single paragraph.

    July 29, 2014 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  15. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    @ tom l
    What do "family values" have to do with somebody trying to come across as broke as Joe Blow?
    This is what we're saying.
    This is why I don't engage the Usual Suspects.
    You guys have this grating and uncanny ability to flip the script, turn the corner in the middle of the street, insert false narratives and equivalents and take off in flight trying to take the rest of us with you.
    I'm not packing for that "trip" tom l.
    If you want to be taken seriously, stick to the subject at hand......and stop copying and pasting your Rudy put-downs.

    July 29, 2014 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  16. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Tampa Tim

    Please stop trying to engage Taliban Tom.
    -----------------------------------------------------
    You're right.
    What was I thinking?

    July 29, 2014 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  17. sonny chapman

    Attention Repubs: You can't beat something with NOTHING.

    July 29, 2014 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  18. its the gop for me

    Oh, that tom l., your a sanctimonious twit. You love to argue, probably why you have so much time to play, your girl don't talk to you? I'm shocked!, no really I am, too funny!

    July 29, 2014 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  19. Silence DoGood

    @anonymous
    Silence DoGood

    @anonymous
    no need to apologize hillary.... we realize your brain injury makes you say an do dumb things.
    -––
    ding ding ding – conspiracy alert – thanks for parroting the made up Rush story.
    You know even he retracted this long ago? But you keep on – eyes closed.
    ––

    conspiracy??? you apparently don't even know the meaning of the word.

    then please do explain all of hillary clinton's lies and dumb statements. she is starting to rival obama on lying and joe biden on stupid statements.
    ------------–
    My bad – I meant conspiracy theory of the day. The "she's sick – brain injury" rumor was taken by Rush who heard it from K.Rove who read it in the National Enquirer rag. Since there was no evidence for this horrible rumor, both Rove and Rush recanted and back peddled. It is now a conspiracy theory with fools who take the totally unsubstantiated story and toss it out when normal reality makes them angry. Tin foils hats forward!

    July 29, 2014 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  20. Rudy NYC

    Deep Fried Beans

    – Claims she "landed under fire in Bosnia"
    – Tears into an NPR reporter who called her out on her gay marriage flip/flop
    – claims she was "dead broke" after she left the White House

    Credibility = ZERO

    "Why did you sting me?! Now we will both drown!"
    "What did you expect... I am a scorpion"
    ------------------------------
    When all that you have are attacks that lack substance and are strictly personal in nature, that's a sign that you lost. Let's take a look at the other side of the ledger, though. Who can the Republican Party get behind? A recent poll that was reported on "The Ticker" provided these numbers, and I provided the analysis.

    Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky's at 11%
    New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie at 10%
    former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush at 10%
    former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee at 10%.
    Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas at 8%
    Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker at 8%
    Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin at 8%
    Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida is at 6%.

    Paul would never win a general election because he holds too many views that are in the extreme
    Christie is viewed as a RINO, who would never win the nomination any more than Rudy Guiliani could.
    Bush. Bush, what more do I need to say? He's also viewed as a RINO by too many folks, too.
    Huckabee holds many extreme views, and folks don't want an unorthodox Christian pastor in the White House.
    Cruz would never win a general election, either, because he holds to many extreme views.
    Walker cannot win re-election as Governor of Wisconsin, so he'll never win a general election.
    Ryan is a budget wonk/quack who has admitted to "not running the numbers" on his own budgets.
    Rubio is a complete joke of a candidate for POTUS, which is why he trails this list.

    July 29, 2014 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  21. Jerry Fletcher/ conspiracy theorist

    Why are we always one upping, ending in gotcha? Tom, your an idiot, k?

    July 29, 2014 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  22. Rudy NYC

    "Please stop trying to engage Taliban Tom."
    ------------------------
    You're tired of reading his misconceptions, misinformation, and missed the boats, too. Huh?

    July 29, 2014 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  23. NameFrank Deery

    Enough already! The only ones who spinned this nonsense in their favor where Warren and Bidden, who don't dare hit Sec Clinton on anything Obama-related. She needs to
    speak out against Obama if that is in her mind, and not let politics intrude. Obama is a disaster and she needs to break from him-pronto.

    Hillary Clinton should have been the 2008 nominee, not Obama, whom she correctly tagged as "inexpierenced" in their debates.
    Had she won, The Nation and world would have been calmer now. Even her succcessor
    Kerry is a flop!
    As for Warren and Biden, the Heckle and Keckle of "progressives", who are failing all over, she need not worry- unless she advocates more Obama agenda nonsense,
    which are failing daily. Including Libya, which
    is Obama's Iraq.
    Things, like airplane maintenance, border control, disease control, and consumer confidence have gone bad under an absentee President, who loves his perks, but
    pays no price, safely-for now-with his race card armour, no longer relevant today. But Obama, even as his endless fundraising tickets get scalped lower and lower, keeps playing his Old Sham Song as the world darkens and erupts-against Our Interests.

    If Clinton is serious about 2016, say it Now and distance youself from a lousey Administration!

    July 29, 2014 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  24. Randy, San Francisco

    A non-issue for most except for the media and Hillary detractors. Hillary haters are sounding desperately mean spirited because Hillary still holds a lead against all potential GOP candidates.

    July 29, 2014 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  25. Wake Up People! Many Rivers to cross.....

    Ol' Yeller says:
    July 29, 2014 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm
    @smith

    Clinton was trying paint herself as the “Im just like you” person. This is a common mistake among liberals in politics as well as liberals with fame. This same mistake took down Micheal Moore (when he tried to say he wasn`t in the 1%, that and he was exposed for all his lies).

    Yes, a very common mistake among liberals… trying to place themselves in the same shoes as an average person. Whereas, Obama came from the background of being raised by a single mom, and Clinton grew up in a small town and also came from a broken home… at least these fioks were there once…
    republicants on the other hand just look down their noses at the dirty poor, whom they see as mostly black or brown. conservatives like mccain, who famously answered when asked what amount of money made a person ‘wealthy’ and he said,, “Oh, I don’t know, 7 million dollars?”. Or, romney flippantly throwing out a 10 thousand dollar bet or putting the car elevator in his new home… they are simply out of touch and cannot even begin to place themselves in the regular folks shoes… because they have NEVER been there.
    Most republicants were born on third base and think they hit triple. For the small number who did actually have a more humble background (like, ryan) well… they are the worst. Wanting to yank away the very safety net which kept them and their family from sleeping under a bridge.
    I got mine… but I won’t lift a finger to ensure you have the same level playing field I myself enjoyed.
    Now vote for me, you stupid rubes!
    (red states)- “Dehrrrr…. okay.

    My man Ol' Yeller!😍😍😍😍 I so enjoy reading each and every word of your wonderful comments. ☺️☺️

    July 29, 2014 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
1 2 3