Recap: Sidney Blumenthal was involved in a secret intelligence network that fed Mrs. Clinton unsubstantiated information to her private email address–the one that her lawyers insisted didn’t exist when she was at State, but that turns out to be another lie. At the time, we didn’t know if Mrs. Clinton read or even responded to the emails. Now, we know she did read some of them and forwarded a few to a State Department staffer. The House Select Committee on Benghazi has subpoenaed him. He’s a die-hard Clintonite, who circulated some of Obama’s dirty laundry that prevented him from taking a job at State after the 2008 election. And he might have received a request from Clinton to find information on Libya, as reported by the Washington Post’s David Ignatius. If this is true, then Clinton’s claim that Blumenthal sent her “unsolicited” emails on Libya really isn’t true.
Yet, one question remained: who bankrolled this whole network? The Atlantic’s Conor Friedersdorf noted that one trip cost this little network tens of thousands of dollars. He wondered if the money came from the Clinton’s personal fortune, or some buried figure within the State Department. We still don’t know, but what we do know is that the Clinton Foundation paid Blumenthal $10,000 per month while he was on his little intelligence gathering trips in Libya (via Politico):
Sidney Blumenthal, a longtime confidant of Bill and Hillary Clinton, earned about $10,000 a month as a full-time employee of the Clinton Foundation while he was providing unsolicited intelligence on Libya to then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, according to multiple sources familiar with the arrangement.
Blumenthal was added to the payroll of the Clintons’ global philanthropy in 2009 — not long after advising Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign — at the behest of former president Bill Clinton, for whom he had worked in the White House, say the sources.
While Blumenthal’s foundation job focused on highlighting the legacy of Clinton’s presidency, some officials at the charity questioned his value and grumbled that his hiring was a favor from the Clintons, according to people familiar with the foundation. They say that, during a 2013 reform push, Blumenthal was moved to a consulting contract that came with a similar pay rate but without benefits — an arrangement that endured until March.
A Clinton loyalist who first earned the family’s trust as an aggressive combatant in the political battles of the 1990s, Blumenthal continues to work as a paid consultant to two groups supporting Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign — American Bridge and Media Matters — both of which are run by David Brock, a close ally of both Clinton and Blumenthal.
Blumenthal’s concurrent work for the foundation, the Brock groups and a pair of businesses seeking potentially lucrative contracts in Libya underscores the blurred lines between her State Department work and that of her family’s charitable and political enterprises
In his own statement last week, Blumenthal suggested that he did not write the memos on behalf of the foundation or any other entities with which he may have been associated, but rather as “a private citizen and friend” of Clinton’s.