White House Cutlery Thief Bill Clinton Jokes About Stealing WH Property
Campaigning in Kentucky today, Bill Clinton made light of now deposed Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych for trying to “privatize” Ukraine’s presidential residence, adding, “Can you imagine what somebody would do if the President, or any president, tried to say I think I’ll privatize the White House and keep the paintings if it’s all the same to you?”
The problem? Bill and Hillary Clinton did try.
Upon leaving the White House in 2001, the Clintons took more than $75,000 worth of china, cutlery, and furniture as they were looking to furnish new homes in upstate New York and Washington:
The examination of gifts to the Clintons also found that 17 separate gifts of china, cutlery and furniture worth more than $75,000 arrived in December 2000 alone, at a time when the Clintons were looking to furnish two newly purchased homes, one each in Washington and Chappaqua, N.Y.
In 2002, after congressional investigators documented hundreds of thousands worth of gifts intended for the residence and not the Clintons personally, they were forced to return or pay for $114,000 in property:
After they were criticized for taking $190,000 worth of china, flatware, rugs, televisions, sofas and other gifts with them when they left, the Clintons announced last week that they would pay for $86,000 worth of gifts, or nearly half the amount.
Their latest decision to send back $28,000 in gifts brings to $114,000 the value of items the Clintons have either decided to pay for or return.