Former Clinton Foundation Director Mulling Run for Congress | NTK Network Former Clinton Foundation Director Mulling Run for Congress

Former Clinton Foundation Director Mulling Run for Congress

There’s political baggage, and then there’s the Clinton Foundation. Good luck with that.

By NTK Staff | 01.24.2018 @1:00pm
Former Clinton Foundation Director Mulling Run for Congress

Former Clinton Foundation Director Donna Shalala is reportedly considering a run for Congress, according to Politico’s Marc Caputo.

Shalala, who also served as Health and Human Services secretary under President Clinton and as president of the University of Miami, would bring with her a fair share of experience to the job, but also a truckload of political baggage.

The seat Shalala is eyeing is currently held by Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), who announced last year she would retire at the end of her term. Despite Ros-Lehtinen holding the seat since 1989, the district does lean Democratic. Hillary Clinton carried the district by nearly 20 percentage points in 2016.

Still, Shalala would face a crowded field and a bevy of critics:

While Democratic insiders respect Shalala, some wonder if the 76-year-old Clinton insider represents the future of the party. Already, critics are raising questions about her time at the University of Miami. Though she won high marks for improving academic standards, the school was marred by a scandal involving a donor with ties to the football program who was busted in a Ponzi scheme. A group of environmentalists have also been critical of Shalala for selling a parcel of land that they say should be set aside for preservation instead of development.

Then, of course, there’s the Clinton Foundation – an organization whose name President Trump made synonymous with scandal in 2016. Despite the money and resources that a close relationship with the Clintons would have, defending the much-maligned organization would be a time-consuming distraction from a congressional campaign.

During the 2016 campaign, Shalala attempted to rebut Trump’s claims that Clinton granted special favors for foundation donors during her time at the State Department.

“There’s no evidence that policy was impacted by anyone requesting an appointment. So let me dispute any indication that Mrs. Clinton’s behavior on policy was changed in any way,” Shalala told CNN in September 2016. “The most important thing is, this is a magnificent foundation that has reinvented philanthropy.”

She stepped down from her position as president of the Clinton Foundation in April 2017.

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