The Washington Post

Meet Doug Band

Bill Clinton. (Danny Johnston/AP) Bill Clinton. (Danny Johnston/AP)

The New Republic's senior editor Alec MacGillis has just written a masterful piece on Bill Clinton's longtime aide Doug Band, which qualifies as essential Washington reading.

One might ask why Clinton's former staffer--who started out carrying the 42nd president's bags and ended up as his closest adviser--is newsworthy, especially now that Band no longer works for his powerful mentor. But there's one clear reason: Band's complex and controversial business practices highlight the interlocking web of enterprises tied to the Clinton family, and that sprawling network will only come under more intense scrutiny should Hillary Rodham Clinton choose to pursue a 2016 presidential bid.

The deeply-researched piece lays out how Band has parlayed both his personal relationship with Clinton and his work for the Clinton Global Initiative and the Clintons' family foundation (recently renamed the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation) into a lucrative consulting business called Teneo Holdings.

As MacGillis quotes one former White House colleague of Band's as saying, “Doug has always been reasonably commercial, let’s just say ... He was a gatekeeper who charged tolls.”

The piece chronicles not only the growth of Band's corporate advisory firm but his business relationship with Raffaello Follieri, an Italian businessman who once pledged to support Clinton's charitable work but ultimately ended up serving time in federal prison for fraud.

It also describes how when the U.S. Postal Service exercised a purchase option on a Sarasota, Fla. post office building owned by Band’s father and another family, Band personally sought to raise the price by appealing to Alan Kessler, a  Clinton ally and a member of the Postal Service Board of Governors. Kessler--who did weigh in on the matter--resigned in July 2011, after the agency's inspector general determined he had failed to uphold his duty to the Postal Service. the agency ended up paying the two families $1.06 million to buy the building, rather than the $825,000 it had originally offered.

The piece does not suggest that either of the Clintons encouraged Band's practice of offering his consulting services to corporate donors connected to CGI or the foundation. But it serves as a powerful reminder of how both of the Clintons have navigated a complicated path since leaving public service by combining charitable works with lucrative business arrangements. Their operations will be examined at an even finer level of detail should they enter the political arena once again.

Juliet Eilperin is The Washington Post's White House bureau chief, covering domestic and foreign policy as well as the culture of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. She is the author of two books—one on sharks, and another on Congress, not to be confused with each other—and has worked for the Post since 1998.

The Freddie Gray case

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!

Campaign 2016 Email Updates

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!
Comments
Show Comments
The Republicans debate Saturday night. The New Hampshire primary is on Feb. 9. Get caught up on the race.
Heading into the next debate...
Donald Trump returns to the Republican presidential debate stage Saturday night. Marco Rubio arrives as a sudden star, but fending off ferocious attacks from his rivals. Still glowing from his Iowa victory, Ted Cruz is trying to consolidate conservative support, while Ben Carson is struggling to avoid being typecast as the dead man walking.
Listen
Play Video
New Hampshire polling averages
Donald Trump holds a commanding lead in the next state to vote.
New Hampshire polling averages
Polling in New Hampshire has typically been volatile after Iowa's caucuses, but Bernie Sanders, from its neighboring state Vermont, has been holding a lead over Hillary Clinton.
55% 38%
Listen
Play Video
Upcoming debates
Feb. 6: GOP debate

on ABC News, in Manchester, N.H.

Feb. 11: Democratic debate

on PBS, in Wisconsin

Feb 13: GOP debate

on CBS News, in South Carolina

Campaign 2016
State of the race

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.