Letter -- The Clinton Foundation's Good Works

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The Post's proposal that former president Bill Clinton stop fundraising for his charitable foundation while his wife serves as secretary of state was shortsighted and dangerous ["The Clinton Conflict," editorial, Dec. 21].

More than 1.4 million people (nearly half of all those receiving HIV/AIDS treatment in the developing world) and approximately two-thirds of all children being treated are on lifesaving antiretroviral medications purchased under Clinton Foundation agreements. This is made possible, in part, by the support of the international drug-purchasing consortium Unitaid and other governments (funding sources The Post suggested the foundation forgo). Impressive results in the areas of climate change, childhood obesity and economic development have been achieved through other Clinton Foundation initiatives.

And yet The Post said Mr. Clinton should "direct his prodigious energies" away from his foundation's work, despite his unparalleled capacity to connect with average people on every continent and to encourage global leaders of the public and private sectors to join together to get things done.

The foundation agreed to go beyond the requirements of law and what any relative of any public official in history has done to avoid even the appearance of a conflict of interest. The agreement between the foundation and President-elect Barack Obama's transition team is practical, fair and transparent -- and, most of all, it honors the service of both Mr. Clinton and Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Asking one to continue to serve her country should not result in asking another to cease serving his.


Chairman and CEO

William J. Clinton Foundation

Little Rock

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