Chelsea Clinton banked a $65,000 fee for a brief presentation at a luncheon sponsored by the University of Missouri at Kansas City.
She got the gig because the school was unwilling to pay her mom, Democrat presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, a $275,000 fee for the same appearance that commemorated the opening of a women’s hall of fame.
This revelation has just emerged after the Washington Post submitted a Freedom of Information Act or “sunshine law” request under the applicable Missouri statute governing public records for 500 pages of emails and other documents related to the Chelsea Clinton speech.
“The schedule she negotiated called for her to speak for 10 minutes, participate in a 20-minute, moderated question-and-answer session, and spend a half-hour posing for pictures with VIPs offstage,” the Post reported about the February, 2014, event.
The contract also gave Chelsea Clinton’s handlers tight control over the event, including even the temperature of the water on the podium.
The university sold 1,000 tickets for the luncheon, at $35 each, which means that the revenue generated fell far short of covering Chelsea Clinton’s speaking fee, which was paid for by private donations. Apparently, on this particular occasion, the school was more interested in generating buzz than fundraising, according to one official.
A rep for Clinton said she donated her fee to the Clinton Foundation, the family operated nonprofit where Chelsea works. “The contract itself and the emails exchanged between the university and Clinton’s representative never referenced her speaking fee going to charity,” the New York Daily News noted.
Chelsea Clinton reportedly earns as much as $75,000 a pop for speechmaking and has raised approximately $800,000 for the foundation through paid speaking engagements.
In a 2014 Fast Company interview, Chelsea Clinton indicated that she doesn’t care about money, which is why she eventually gravitated toward the Clinton Foundation. Chelsea Clinton reportedly has a net worth in the neighborhood of $15 million, which includes the $600,000 she was paid during a her relatively short tenure at NBC News.
The speaking circuit has been very lucrative for the Clinton family. According to the New York Times, in the last year and a half alone, Bill and Hillary Clinton earned about $30 million for corporate speechmaking. “The sum, which makes Mrs. Clinton among the wealthiest of the 2016 presidential candidates, could create challenges for the former secretary of state as she tries to cast herself as a champion of everyday Americans in an era of income inequality,” the Times observed.
Do you think the University of Missouri got its money’s worth by paying Chelsea Clinton $65,000 for a luncheon speech?
[Photo by Joe Raedle / Getty Images News]