George Stephanopoulos apologized Thursday for not acknowledging he donated $50,000 to the Clinton Foundation in recent years.
In a statement to Politico, the “Good Morning America” and “This Week” anchor apologized for keeping his contributions from ABC and viewers.
“I made charitable donations to the Foundation in support of the work they’re doing on global AIDS prevention and deforestation, causes I care about deeply,” he said. “I thought that my contributions were a matter of public record. However, in hindsight, I should have taken the extra step of personally disclosing my donations to my employer and to the viewers on air during the recent news stories about the Foundation. I apologize.”
The Clinton Foundation has become a big media topic lately after conservative author Peter Schweizer’s new book, “Clinton Cash,” alleged shady financial dealings by the foundation, particularly relating to Hillary Clinton using her position as Secretary of State to reel in donations.
Stephanopoulos interviewed Schweizer on “This Week” recently, and grilled him about what proof he had of illegal activity surrounding the Clintons — but Stephanopoulos didn’t disclose he had donated to the foundation himself.
Stephanopoulos has a history with the Clintons: Before joining ABC, he was communications director and a senior advisor to President Clinton; he also served as communications director on Clinton’s 1992 presidential campaign.
ABC News issued a statement defending Stephanopoulos.
“As George has said, he made charitable donations to the Foundation to support a cause he cares about deeply and believed his contributions were a matter of public record,” the network’s statement read. “He should have taken the extra step to notify us and our viewers during the recent news reports about the Foundation. He’s admitted to an honest mistake and apologized for that omission. We stand behind him.”
The Clinton Foundation’s financial dealings has largely been absent from the media cycle lately as Baltimore riots and the Amtrak derailment have taken center stage: Stephanopoulos’ donation might reignite the conversation.