[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/01/13/art.hrchand0113.gi.jpg caption="Sen. Clinton was questioned Tuesday about the Clinton Foundation and the Clinton Global Initiative."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) - During her confirmation hearing Tuesday before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Sen. Hillary Clinton refused to commit to extending an existing memorandum of understanding (MoU) to cover contributors to her husband's Clinton Global Initiative.
Clinton asserted that government ethics officials have concluded under "well-established" rules that "there is not an inherent conflict of interest" for her in any of former President Bill Clinton's fundraising or other business dealings.
Clinton stated that her husband had already gone beyond what was legally required by signing a MoU to fully disclose donations to the Clinton Foundation.
While admitting that extending the MoU to the Clinton Global Initiative is not required by law, Louisiana GOP Sen. David Vitter asserted that "a lot of real and perceived conflict issues" arise from the work of the group, particularly relating to certain contributors from the Middle East.
Clinton responded that while the MoU would not be amended to cover the work of the Initiative, she was trying to address all questions about potential conflicts of interest in a "transparent manner" and there would be "ongoing reviews" of the Clinton Global Initiative's activities.
The initiative wasn't included in the original MoU because it has always disclosed the names of its donors, Clinton noted.
She also refused to agree to a request by Sen. Richard Lugar, an Indiana Republican, to have the Clinton Foundation reject donations from foreign governments during her tenure as secretary of state.
She asserted that donor countries, as well as the Obama transition team, know that the majority of the money donated goes directly to humanitarian activities such as purchasing AIDS medications in poor countries.
Clinton also stated that all foreign government donations to the foundation will be reviewed by the State Department.
She said she is not immediately made aware of new donations to the foundation, so it would be tough to argue that she could be potentially influenced by its donors.
"I will keep a very close eye on how this is being implemented and make sure the good work of the foundation continues without having an untoward effect on my service," Clinton promised.