Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made $200,000 per speech in the past. Now, her speaking fees have plummeted by 87 percent.
Rutgers University is reportedly paying the former presidential nominee $25,000 to speak at the university Thursday, according to NJ Advance Media.
Clinton will be discussing politics, American democracy and how she has helped shape women’s political history.
The money she will be paid to speak at Rutgers, that will not be coming from tuition or state aid according to the university, is a far cry from what she use to be paid per speech.
According to a 2016 study by The Associated Press, out of the $22 million Clinton was paid to speak after her retirement as secretary of state, one-third of the groups that paid her speech fees were government contractors.
This study was based on federal records, regulatory filings and correspondence of the 82 corporations who paid Clinton to speak between 2013 and 2015.
The results showed that most of those groups had lobbied federal agencies in recent years. In two years, Clinton had over 94 paid appearances, which gave way to criticism from her opponents.
During the presidential race, Sen. Bernie Sanders called on Clinton to release the transcripts of her speeches, according to the AP.
“If somebody gets paid $225,000 for a speech, it must be an unbelievably extraordinary speech,” he said. “I kind of think if that $225,000 speech was so extraordinary, she should release the transcripts and share it with all of us.”
Lawrence M. Noble, general counsel of the Campaign Legal Center, added that her high paying speaking tour “puts her in the position of having to disavow that money is an influence on her while at the same time backing campaign reform based on the influence of money. It ends up creating the appearance of influence.”
Trade groups, who lobby for industry interests, paid Clinton over $7.1 million for her speeches. The financial services and investment industry contributed about $4.1 million to Clinton’s fees.
One Twitter user noted that the recent decline in speaking fees could do with the fact that Clinton does not have an influence on American politics anymore.
The recent speaking engagement at Rutgers shows that universities are also paying Clinton less to speak on their campuses.
In 2014, she traveled to at least eight different universities to make public speeches. She was paid $251,250 to speak at the University of Connecticut and $300,000 to speak at the University of California at Los Angeles, according to The Washington Free Beacon.
Students at the University of Nevada at Las Vegas — where officials agreed to raise tuition by 17 percent over four years — wrote Clinton a letter prior to her speech to return the planned $225,000 fee or they would protest her appearance, The Washington Post reported.
“What makes fees at this level outrageous … is that one speaker’s fee becomes comparable to what it costs to educate a student for several years,” Harvard University professor Harry R. Lewis said in 2014. “At the same time you’re putting your students into serious debt, as most institutions do; it’s an allocation of resources that’s very suspect.”
Thursday’s speech will be held at Rutgers Athletic Center and will be Clinton’s third public appearance in New Jersey since she lost the 2016 election.
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