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In this Sept. 22, 2014 file photo, Hillary Clinton speaks as former President Bill Clinton looks on during the opening session of the annual Clinton Global Initiative meeting in New York City. (John Moore/Getty Images) In this Sept. 22, 2014 file photo, Hillary Clinton speaks as former President Bill Clinton looks on during the opening session of the annual Clinton Global Initiative meeting in New York City. (John Moore/Getty Images)

In this Sept. 22, 2014 file photo, Hillary Clinton speaks as former President Bill Clinton looks on during the opening session of the annual Clinton Global Initiative meeting in New York City. (John Moore/Getty Images)

Tom Kertscher
By Tom Kertscher February 11, 2021

The Clinton Foundation has not folded. A 2018 post that’s recirculating is wrong

If Your Time is short

  • The claim is wrong. The foundation has continued to operate.

A Facebook post from February 2018 that’s been widely recirculated in recent days claims the charitable foundation named for Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton is no more.

It says: "Have you wondered why the Clinton Foundation folded so suddenly after Hillary was no longer in a position of influence?"

The post, which has more than 163,000 shares and goes on to allege "white-collar crimes" in the management of the foundation’s finances, was flagged as part of Facebook’s efforts to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed. (Read more about our partnership with Facebook.)

The claim is wrong. The Clinton Foundation continues to operate.

The foundation’s work

The foundation, which was granted its nonprofit status in 1998, was launched in the names of then-President Bill Clinton, 2016 presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, and their daughter, Chelsea.

The New York City-based foundation says its mission is to develop and implement programs that create economic opportunity, improve public health, and inspire civic engagement and service. 

It remains operational. It has had no breaks in operation, said spokesman Brian Cookstra. Among its recent activities:

  • On Feb. 4, former President Bill Clinton launched a new version of his podcast, "Why Am I Telling You This?" The podcast is co-produced by the foundation. 

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  • On Feb. 2, he hosted a foundation event, "Building an Inclusive Recovery," and announced the formation of a new venture, the Clinton Global Initiative Action Network on an Inclusive Economic Recovery. 

  • On Jan. 26, the foundation announced it had surpassed 700,000 meals packaged and delivered to people in central Arkansas who have been affected by the pandemic. An Arkansas TV station covered some of the meal distributions in April 2020. 

Pattern of attacks

The recirculated Facebook post alleges that the foundation spent far more money on salaries and fees than it gave away in grants. 

That’s similar to a November 2019 Facebook post that claimed that in 2014, the Clinton Foundation gave only $5 million to charity while spending $85 million for salaries and travel. We rated it False. The foundation hired people to carry out its own humanitarian programs instead of giving away the money, meaning its charitable contributions show up as program expenses instead of grants on tax forms. The foundation spent $217 million on programs and about $13 million for salaries and travel in 2014. 

The post we’re checking began recirculating widely on Facebook in the days leading up to the Feb. 9, 2021, start of the second impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump. 

Similar examples of disinformation about Clinton, including claims about the foundation, surfaced during Trump’s first impeachment trial in early 2020. 

Our ruling

A 2018 Facebook post that is widely recirculating on Facebook claimed: "The Clinton Foundation folded."

That’s not true. The post also repeats debunked claims of financial abuses by the foundation.

The foundation continues to operate and there’s no evidence to indicate it ever ceased. The post is false and ridiculous — our definition of Pants on Fire.

Our Sources

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More by Tom Kertscher

The Clinton Foundation has not folded. A 2018 post that’s recirculating is wrong

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