John Podesta, Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman, said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that the former Secretary of State’s future with the foundation that bears her name will be defined after she wins the Democratic nomination and if she’s elected president.
“If she is successful and we get the nomination — which we’re fighting for every vote for — and she’s elected president, then we’ll put in an appropriate separation,” Podesta said Sunday.
Podesta also noted that Clinton resigned from the board of the Clinton Foundation — shortly after announcing her presidential campaign in April.
“I think if there are concerns, we would be happy to address those at an appropriate time. But right now, she’s separated from the foundation,” Podesta said. “I think that, as she did as secretary of state, she’ll put in place anything that’s appropriate to make sure that the work of the foundation, which has been excellent across the country and across the world, can continue, but without any question about undue influence.”
Meanwhile, Clinton’s position on trade has recently been in question. House Democrats dealt a big blow to President Obama’s agenda last week by voting against a measure to protect workers who might be negatively affected by a trade deal with several Pacific nations. The deal, called the Trans-Pacific Partnership, has sharply divided Democrats. Podesta said that the deal has both positives and negatives, but she will take a position once the deal is finalized.
“What we’ve seen at the last couple of days is skirmishes around the process for considering that agreement. But the agreement's not final,” he told Chuck Todd. “When it is final, she’ll render a judgment about that.”
Podesta, who served in both the Bill Clinton and Obama administrations, also offered Hillary Clinton’s standard for approving any trade deal: “First, does it grow jobs, grow wages, and protect American workers? Second, does it protect our national security?”
Clinton’s statements over the years show her positions shifted to the left on several issues, including the North American Free Trade Agreement, the invasion of Iraq, Cuba policy and criminal justice reform. Podesta argued that Clinton has been consistent, but times change and attitudes evolve.
“This isn’t 1992, it’s not 2008, it’s 2015,” he said, referring to the years of her husband’s presidential election and her first run for the White House. “She’ll take positions that are consistent with a long-term, long-time set of values that have made her a progressive, in the best sense of the word, fighting for working families, fighting for children, fighting for women across the country and across the world.”