May 11th, 2010
12:05 PM ET
13 years ago

Bill Clinton lends a hand on wife's debt

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Former President Clinton is helping Sec. of State Hillary Clinton retire her remaining 2008 presidential campaign."]Washington (CNN) – If you supported Secretary of State Hillary Clinton during her 2008 presidential run, chances are you received an e-mail Tuesday morning from her husband asking for help to pay down the remaining campaign debt for her failed presidential bid.

Subscribers to Clinton's formidable e-mail list, amassed during her 2008 presidential run, received a message offering a day in New York with former President Bill Clinton. A contribution earns the donor a chance to enter their name into a contest."How would you like the chance to come up to New York and spend a day with me?" Clinton asks. "Hillary's campaign still has a few vestiges of debt that I know she would like to see paid in full. Will you reach out today to help Hillary this one last time?"

Clinton hosted a similar fundraiser in earlier this year, and writes he would "like to do it again."

As of March 31, the Clinton campaign was still in debt to the tune of $771,000, down from $845,500 owed at the end of December 2009. Clinton's e-mail list itself is one of her strongest fundraising tools. The campaign raised just over $169,000 during the last filing period by renting out the list to the campaigns of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada, Sen. Patty Murray of Washington, Florida gubernatorial candidate Alex Sink, and Rep. Diana DeGette of Colorado.

The Democratic polling firm of Penn and Schoen is the Clinton campaign's sole remaining creditor.

– CNN's Robert Yoon contributed to this report.

soundoff (103 Responses)
  1. chillin

    Pay it yourself I have to pay my debts o should you. You gambled and lost

    May 11, 2010 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  2. Tim

    I heard that Lewinsky has made a contribution to win a chance to have a day with him.

    May 11, 2010 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  3. Insanity!

    As much as I dislike politicians (especially lawyers), I do realize that BEFORE they became "politicians" , they were generally idealistic and passionate about improving the state of the "things". SOMEONE has to be available to accept the responsibility of leadership. Most of us will not. Hillary ran for President of the U.S. Does ANYONE truly believe that her motives were totally self-serving? Come on, guys!! Give some credit! If you don't want to contribute, don't! But why all of the personally destructive comments?

    May 11, 2010 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  4. Cando

    All that are complaining, do you really think the other politcians don't do the same thing? Both parties beg for money, get real. If you are getting mad at the Clinton's get mad at all of them.

    May 11, 2010 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  5. Tim

    Since Obama has acknowledged that he makes more money than can be justified or that is conscienable, he should donate his excess to her.

    May 11, 2010 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  6. jeff jackson, alabama

    And some of you out there have
    no respect for Palin ?
    This is a disgrace for a sitting
    Sec. of State.

    May 11, 2010 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  7. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    ."How would you like the chance to come up to New York and spend a day with me?"

    OH, HELL YES!!! lol Just as soon as I figure out what I'm going to tell my husband!!!

    On a more serious note, what an ingenious idea. He's kinda prostituting himself for his wife's sake.....this time.....sorta.
    Kind of romantic in a kinky-Billy kind of way, ya' know?!

    May 11, 2010 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  8. Shar

    Let's Review:::::: They cheated on their tax returns a couple of year's ago to the tune of $800,000!!! They HID that income in their Foundation so that they did not have to pay taxes on it!! These are not integral people, people. They are just looking for wedding $$$! JK

    May 11, 2010 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  9. dave bannerton

    if my business has debt.....Im on the hook

    please dont help them.... make them own some responsibility... they clearly can afford it

    May 11, 2010 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  10. Shar

    Why would that comment be moderated?? The facts were in the Washington Post and they DID have to pay taxes on the $800,000!!

    May 11, 2010 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  11. GOP view

    There is method to the seeming madness. It takes a D.C. lawyer's logic to understand. If the Clintons pay off the remaining campaign debt, the GOP will be ready to misconstrue paying off this debt as a post campaign loan from the Clintons to the Clintons and make it out to be fishy. The GOP will then compare the transaction to Whitewater which was about a loan -on which the Clintons were determined to be innocent by the SEC and FBI -despite GOP propaganda to the contrary. The Clintons would rather prefer to spend their time for the more noble cause of working with the Bush family to reduce AIDS and poverty around the globe than spend countless hours in moot litigation launched by members of the GOP behind the scenes.

    If the Clintons pay the debt in full, the audit that the GOP would lauch against the Clintons would easily exceed $600,000. It is not worth the risks of having anything misconstrued. It is much easier to ask supporters to cover the debt and have a few negative pieces in the media, versus a year or longer bogus audit.

    May 11, 2010 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  12. A.B.

    Why don't the Clintons use their own personal assets to pay down the 2008 Presidential campaign debt. instead of bothering people who have debts of their own? Bill Clinton makes at least $60K a pop whenever he works the lecture circuit and speaks. He makes more than enough to pay down Hillary's debt. Plus, he gets royalities from his best selling book. Hillary also gets royalites from her book even though it wasn't a best seller. Besides, who wants to spend a day with a "has been" like Bill Clinton?

    May 11, 2010 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  13. Dave

    Since its obvious she can not manage things withouth going into debt, it ought to wife out her chances for another run for President.


    Since the Americans are sheep, I'm sure she'll run again.

    May 11, 2010 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  14. The Clear Thinking Independent

    I've got to beleive that President Clinton has gotten additonal speeches and can command a higher honorarium simply because his wife is Secretary of State. Let them use their sizable income to pay off this debt.

    Hilliary is certain to get another $X M book deal when she leaves the State Department. The Clintons can use their own money to pay off these debts ... which they incurred because of their pigheadedness about staying in the race long after it was clear that Barack Obama would win.

    We you bet your own money on yourself in pursuit of YOUR lifelong ambitions and you lose, you should not expect millions of "the little people" to make you whole.

    May 11, 2010 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  15. Obozo's Record Deficit + Higher Taxes

    R U sure OBOZO isn't giving Billary a GOVT handout?

    May 11, 2010 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  16. mickey lane

    Hey, Bill & Hillary dedicated themselves to us when they could have been super rich right out of college. & it wasn't they who are responsible for our mess. If you are honest go back to your hero 'Ronny', '1980's? & as far as Hillary pulling out of the race that would have been stupid! Face it Obama is in the White House because the media, arabs muslins & oprahs fan base polluted Obama with tons of money. Instead of Bill & Hill asking us for $$$ they should go to 1600 Penn Ave & ask their president to help them out. I refuse to acknowledge Obama as my preident. He knows he violated the Constitution with his many lies. Why don't you all begin a presidential recall campaign? Is that allowed or will he, Obama, want to put a muzzel on us?

    May 11, 2010 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  17. Dems won't help their own party!

    The Clintons are just like the rest of the Washington Scum. To ask Americans for money in these failed times with Obama at the helm is obsurd! The Clintons made multi-millions last year as did Obama. Why don't they pay for this. Dems were stupid enough to put these people in office so dems should pay!!

    May 11, 2010 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  18. John D

    In a word Slick Willy, "NO"!

    May 11, 2010 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  19. Marc

    Oh, the poor multi-millionares....

    May 11, 2010 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  20. Fed Up

    Wow! Great job Bill! Are you bucking for VP in 2012? Why didn't you do this earlier?

    May 11, 2010 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  21. Chipster

    People simply don't understand campaign finance rules, largely because they are so complex and often make no sense. It doesn't matter how much money Bill or Hillary Clinton have. She loaned money to her campaign because she was not allowed to simply contribute it. When the campaign could not pay her, she wrote off the debt that the campaign owed to her for her loan but she cannot simply pay the outstanding campaign debt. She must raise the funds through contributions.

    May 11, 2010 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  22. seebofubar

    Just wait until Obama's wife calls for money to pay down the national debt her worthless husband created. Only about 50K for every man, woman and child in the US.

    May 11, 2010 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  23. VOVA

    How is it different from begging at the church entrance?

    May 11, 2010 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  24. mae

    Pay off her debt!! Are you kidding. Billy boy has made over $100 million since he left office. He played the game well for the big boys and now is being paid back while the rest of us struggle to put food on our tables. The nerve of these criminal politicians always amazes me. Not all of us just fell off the turnip truck........

    May 11, 2010 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  25. bail me out

    I am unemployed, facing forclosure on my very modest house. They live like kings and queens, have money in the bank and make tons of money each year and are asking for a handout. i just want to know WHERE IS MY BAILOUT?

    May 11, 2010 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
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