Calling Clinton's Bluff, Sanders Reveals What His Paid Speeches Look Like
Has Bernie Sanders thrown down the gauntlet after Hillary Clinton's challenge at Thursday's Democratic town hall?
Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton said during a town hall on Thursday evening she will release transcripts of paid, closed-door speeches she gave to Wall Street firms "when everyone else does."
That may be sooner than she thinks.
On Friday morning, rival Bernie Sanders appeared to throw down the gauntlet by posting a video of one of the speeches he was paid to give in 2011—and how much he was paid for it.
— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) February 19, 2016
Clinton's speaking fees—which have netted the former secretary of state millions in recent years—have come under scrutiny during the campaign, with Sanders and others suggesting they show she is too closely aligned with big banks.
Politico reported earlier this month that when she addressed Goldman Sachs executives and technology titans at a summit in Arizona in October of 2013, "she spoke glowingly of the work the bank was doing raising capital and helping create jobs, according to people who saw her remarks."
The issue seems to have resonated with voters, like the man who asked Clinton about the speaking fees at Thursday's MSNBC-moderated Democratic presidential town hall in Las Vegas.
"As a realtor here in Nevada I know how important the economy is to our great nation," he said. "As a Democratic candidate who has delivered speeches to the largest U.S. financial institutions in exchange for hundreds of thousands of dollars in speaking fees, why are you hesitant to release transcript or audio/video recordings of those meetings to be transparent with the American people regarding the promises and assurances that you have made to the big banks?"
"Let me say this," Clinton responded, "I am happy to release anything I have when everybody else does the same because every other candidate in this race has given speeches to private groups, including Senator Sanders."
The New York Times reported in May 2015 that in the year prior, Sanders had collected $1,867.42 for three appearances, "a grand sum that is chump change in presidential politicking but enough for the senator to respectably donate the money to charity."