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Ex-US Senate Adviser: Probe of Trump Foundation Distracts From Clinton Abuses

© Flickr / Gage SkidmoreDonald Trump
Donald Trump - Sputnik International
The New York Attorney General’s announcement of an investigation into the Trump Foundation is a bid to distract US voters from far worse abuses carried out by Hillary and Bill Clinton, veteran Republican Senate leadership adviser Jim Jatras told Sputnik.

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump speaks at the National Guard Association of the United States 138th General Conference and Exhibition in Baltimore, Maryland, U.S., September 12, 2016. - Sputnik International
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WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — On Tuesday, the Attorney General for the state of New York Eric Schneiderman, a member of the Democratic Party, said in an interview that he is "looking into" the Trump Foundation, which is the charity run by US Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump.

"Of course Democratic demands to look into the Trump Foundation are politically motivated," Jatras, who was also a US diplomat, stated on Wednesday. "The Democrats hope to distract from abuses in the Clinton Foundation, ‘pay to play’ at the Clinton State Department, and other abuses of a massively larger scale."

Jatras said Trump, as a New York billionaire, had no need to try and make profits out of his charitable foundation whereas Bill and Hillary Clinton had used their charitable foundation to attract billions of dollars.

"Even without his foundation, Trump would still be a billionaire, so why would he need to game a charity? [But] the Clinton Foundation — and both Hillary’s and former President Bill Clinton’s massive speaking fees — are fundamental to their fortunes," he explained.

Jatras described the Clintons as "this Bonnie and Clyde of American politics" who in sixteen years had gone from "dead broke" by their own admission upon leaving the White House in 2001 to worth a quarter of a billion dollars.

Jatras noted that the latest attempt to discredit trump came as Democrats were growing increasingly alarmed by Hillary Clinton’s disappearing lead in opinion polls and the growing fears over her health.

"This also is first and foremost a distraction," Jatras noted. "Some are already pronouncing Hillary a political corpse, prematurely, in my view, and arguing over whether she would be replaced."

Potential alternative candidates on the Democratic ticket were Vice President Joe Biden, Clinton’s running mate Senator Tim Kaine and Senator Bernie Sanders, whom she defeated by a relatively narrow margin in a long primary campaign earlier this year, Jatras said.

However, Jatras predicted that Clinton would refuse to step down as the Democratic presidential candidate even if her health condition proves to be serious.

"Hillary would never let go of the nomination she’s dedicated her life to obtaining until it was literally pried from her cold, dead fingers," he explained. "This militates against her stepping down, no matter how sick she is."

Clinton hoped the Trump Foundation probe would distract public attention from another politically damaging period for her, Jatras argued.

Clinton’s disastrous week combined an insult to a quarter of the electorate by calling Trump supporters "deplorable" with her collapse at the 9/11 memorial on Sunday, compounded by yet more lies and obfuscation, he added.

This explained why Clinton wanted her supporters to change the subject and try and renew their personal attacks on Trump rather than debate him on the issues, Jatras concluded.

In June, The Washington Post reported that in the last 15 years Trump spent about $2.8 million on charity through his foundation, contrary to claims that he had donated some $100 million in recent years. The newspaper added that it had not found any evidence of Trump donating to his foundation since 2008.

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