Politics

Students Demand That Hillary Clinton Return $225,000 In Speaking Fees

| by Will Hagle

If Hillary Clinton’s inevitable 2016 presidential bid is unsuccessful, the politician could still have a lucrative career as a guest speaker. Clinton earned $225,000 in fees for a speech she delivered in October at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, students recently learned.

In response to that discovery, more than 23,000 UNLV students signed a letter written by student government leaders and addressed to the Clinton Foundation requesting that Hillary return the money to the university. The letter, while critical of Clinton’s presumed acceptance of the speaking fee, still praised her lifelong charitable work, especially in the education field.

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“In keeping with Secretary Clinton’s long-standing history of advocating for students in higher education, we as student government leaders are asking that she charitably donate part or all of the $225,000 speaking fee she is reportedly making for this fund raising speech back to the UNLV Foundation as a whole,” a portion of the letter reads. 

According to the Inquistr, Clinton typically receives about $200,000 for a speaking engagement. The fees for this particular speech were provided by private donations, not by the public university itself. 

Although Clinton spokesman Nick Merrill has claimed that Clinton planned to redirect the funds to her foundation regardless, UNLV student body President Elias Benjelloun insisted that at least some of the money be returned to his school.

“Our student government asks that Hillary Clinton returns part or all of the money back to students, back to the university. We’ve been seeing increases in tuition, we’ve been asking students and families to come back to the table, and it’s time for private entities to come to the table as well,” said Benjelloun, according to Politico. 

Although Clinton has yet to declare her interest in running for president, she is largely assumed to be a frontrunner for the Democratic nomination. Much like Mitt Romney during the 2012 election, the public spotlight has been on the Clintons’ massive wealth. Clinton herself drew attention to the issue when she claimed that their family was “dead broke” after her husband’s presidency ended.