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Clintons made $25M from recent speeches

Democratic frontrunner’s wealth has raised questions on left and right on her ability to identify with the middle-class

Hillary Rodham Clinton (photo credit: AP/Manuel Balce Ceneta)
Hillary Rodham Clinton (photo credit: AP/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Hillary Rodham Clinton and former President Bill Clinton reported Friday they earned more than $25 million combined in speaking fees since January 2014.

Clinton’s presidential campaign reported the income in a personal financial disclosure report filed with the Federal Election Commission. The report, required of every candidate for the White House, also shows Hillary Clinton earned more than $5 million from her 2014 memoirs, “Hard Choices.”

The details of the report were described by a Clinton campaign official who spoke on condition of anonymity in order to discuss a report not yet publicly available from the FEC. The report was expected to be released publicly later Friday.

While Clinton has begun her second campaign for president by casting herself as a champion for middle-class voters, she’s long drawn criticism from Republicans about the wealth she and Bill Clinton have amassed since he left the White House. That includes their ability to command six-figure fees for delivering speeches.

Former US president Bill Clinton (photo credit: Uri Lenz/Flash90/File)
Former US president Bill Clinton (photo credit: Uri Lenz/Flash90)

During last year’s book tour, Clinton told an interviewer that her family was “dead broke” when they left the White House, which Republicans said showed a lack of understanding of the needs of typical families.

Liberals have also questioned whether Clinton is too closely tied to Wall Street, pointing to her days representing New York in the US Senate. They are also wary she might not aggressively seek to regulate the nation’s financial industry and serve as an adequate bulwark against economic inequality.

The campaign official said the FEC filing will show that the couple earned more than $25 million for more than 100 paid speeches between January 2014 and May 2015.

The report will also list assets of between $5 million and $25 million in a mutual fund managed by Vanguard. The couple did not earn any capital gains during the period and paid an effective tax rate of more than 30 percent in the 2014 tax year, the official said.

Clinton last filed a financial disclosure report during her final year as Secretary of State in 2012, when she reported that her and her husband’s wealth was estimated between $4 million and $20 million.

Much of that income came from the lucrative speeches and appearances made by Bill Clinton around the world. A recent Associated Press review of the Clintons’ disclosures and State Department records found that Bill Clinton had been paid at least $50 million for his appearances between 2009 and 2012, the four years that Hillary Clinton served as the nation’s top diplomat.

Federal candidates are required to file personal financial disclosures within 30 days of announcing their candidacy or on May 15. Several Republican candidates in the race filed a request for an extension to those deadlines.

Each disclosure form lists candidates’ assets and liabilities, and provides a snapshot of their annual income. But federal rules allow those figures to be reported in wide ranges instead of specific amounts — allowing candidates, for example, to report a large asset as worth between $1 million and $5 million.

Any income exceeding $200 has to be reported and most assets worth more than $1,000 at the end of a calendar year must be disclosed.

Assets can include bank accounts, real estate, insurance plans, stock and securities holdings. Liabilities can include loans, mortgages and other debts.

Annual income includes not only salaries, but also stock, securities and real estate profits, interest, book profits and speeches and other honoraria.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press.

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