News & Politics

Jet-Setting Hillary Clinton Makes Royal Demands On Event Organizers

Clinton's swank requirements are blasted by a Las Vegas paper.

Photo Credit: Clinton Global Initiative

According to a report in the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Hillary Clinton lives the pampered life of a presumptive president — traveling to and from speaking engagements by private jet, staying in presidential suites at hotels, and pulling in six figures per speaking engagement.

Beyond staying at ultra-luxury hotel accommodations as she travels, Clinton demands that she and her companions are transported to events in private jets no smaller than a 16-passenger Gulfstream G450 — a limousine of the skies. She requires that she spends no more time than 90 minutes at any event and that she will appear in no more than 50 photographs with no more than 100 people.

No media are allowed to cover Hillary Clinton's speaking events. Video and audio recording are also banned. However, Clinton provides a stenographer to transcribe her speeches. But the transcript is only be made available to the former First Lady, and the stenographer’s bill — some $1,250 —is also picked up by event organizers.

According to the Review-Journal, Clinton travels with two aides and has an advance party that scopes out the sites of upcoming events before she visits, which is very reminiscent of White House travel procedure.

The Review-Journal obtained this information through Nevada’s public records law. It found a contract and associated documents between Clinton’s agent and the University of Nevada in regards to a speech she will make at a fundraiser there in October. In all likelihood, Clinton makes similar demands for other speaking engagements.

The Review-Journal criticizes the presumptive 2016 presidential candidate’s travel demands as “lifestyles of the rich and famous.” And along with some of Clinton’s recent comments about her family’s wealth, the paper says it appears to critics that she’s “out of touch with average Americans.”

Clinton had commented that she and husband Bill Clinton came out of the White House “dead broke” and she maintained that the family struggled. She also claimed that the Clinton's are not “truly well off” although it has been reported that Bill and Hillary have earned more than $100 million — most of it from speaking-engagement fees — in the past eight years.

And while people truly struggle to make ends meet — or to pay tuition in the case of some UNLV students — some question the wisdom of indulging such high speaking fees, according to The Review-Journal:  

The size of Hillary Clinton’s fee has come under fire from critics who question the large expense in an era when students are hard-pressed to cover tuition and leave school saddled with massive debt.

But Clinton’s $225,000 is something of a cut-rate. Documents obtained by the newspaper show that she initially asked for $300,000 and reveal that she insists on controlling every detail of the private event, large and small, to ensure that she will be the center of attention.

The University of Nevada Las Vegas Foundation, which is hosting Clinton at its annual dinner on October 13, is barred from advertising her appearance on television, radio, or billboards. Moreover, Clinton’s staff must approve any promotional material for the event.

The approval process for event promotion has met with some resentment from UNLV Foundation officials. One official complained in an email that Clinton’s staff has dumbed down the description of the foundation’s dinner and designer for the foundation’s website called the meddling “assbackwards” in another electronic missive.

Despite the grousing, the UNLV Foundation has complied with Clinton’s wishes, as it will like turn a healthy profit. Top tables go for $20,000 and are already sold out. It’s reported that the rest of the tables, which cost between $3,000 and $10,000, are selling briskly.

 

Cliff Weathers is a former AlterNet senior editor who writes on the environment and consumer issues. He was previously a deputy editor at Consumer Reports. His work has also appeared in Salon, Car and Driver, Playboy and Raw Story among other publications. Follow him on Twitter @cliffweathers.