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Press Release - 2 More Questions For Clinton/Gore: The Indonesian Connection

October 15, 1996

"In the 24 hours since we asked President Clinton and Vice President Gore five simple questions about the Indonesian Connection, their only response has been evasion, stonewall, denial, and attack. In other words, they have reverted to form: the pure Clinton.

"Even the liberal Washington Post editorial page acknowledged the obvious today when it said the Indonesian money came from those 'seeking to buy influence.' 'If that is not what was happening here,' continued the editorial, 'the administration has the burden of explaining what it was.' Washington Post, 10/15/96

"We agree. To help discover where the foreign money came from, how it got into the Clinton campaign and the DNC's coffers, and what exactly it bought, we have two more questions for President Clinton and Vice President Gore.

1. Was the $425,000 in foreign contributions to the DNC illegally laundered through the Indonesian gardener, Arief Wiriandinata?

"The Knight Ridder news service reported that one of the largest contributions this year, $425,000, came from Arief Wiriandinata, an Indonesian who lived briefly in Virginia and whose father-in-law was a senior executive who worked for the Riadys." New York Times, 10/10/96

"Arief Wiriandinata is a landscape architect, and the couple lived in a modest townhouse in Virginia." Washington Post, 10/12/96

2. What special access to the President did foreign contributors get?

"On at least 35 separate occasions, the DNC arranged for big money donors from key states to join Clinton for 90-minute "coffees" in the White House residence. One guest earlier this year was Arief Wiriandinata, Ning's son-in-law, who along with his wife donated the now-controversial $475,000." Newsweek, 10/21/96

Attached are the five still-unanswered questions from yesterday.

-- Scott Reed

Campaign Manager

FIVE UNANSWERED QUESTIONS ON THE INDONESIAN CONNECTION

1. Why have you used U.S. foreign policy in Indonesia as a fundraising tool to help secure illegal campaign contributions from foreigners?

"With Mr. Clinton's election to the Presidency in 1992, the Indonesian billionaire Riadys and their business associates have become more politically active, from soliciting campaign contributions to influencing trade policy and conducting quiet diplomacy. ... Last month, in response to questions from the Los Angeles Times, the Democratic Party returned an unlawful $250,000 contribution that had been solicited from a South Korean company by the former American head of the Riady's business operations, John Huang." New York Times, 10/10/96

2. Did you turn a blind eye to human rights violations in East Timor in exchange for hundreds of thousands of dollars in illegal campaign contributions from foreign nationals?

"Out of the limelight, Mr. Riady has become a player in Asian-American relations, holding discussions with Mr. Clinton about United States relations with China and Indonesia, American and Asian officials say. The officials also say he has acted as a back-channel between the State Department and President Suharto of Indonesia on East Timor, a former Portuguese colony that Indonesia now controls and where human rights questions have been raised." New York Times, 10/10/96

3. Didn't it raise suspicions that a gardener with a green card -- a foreign national with ties to the brutal Indonesian dictatorship -- donated $425,000 to the Democratic National Committee's soft-money operation?

"Why did an Indonesian gardener with a green card, related to a Lippo partner, pass along $425,000 and then race home, avoiding inquiries?" William Safire, New York Times, 10/14/96

4. How do you justify selling top-level White House access to wealthy foreign nationals from military dictatorships like Indonesia?

"Over time, (Indonesian billionaire Mochtar Riady became pals with the future President. He was an invited guest at Clinton's inauguration and his son, James, got a plum seat at the table a key economic summit convened after Clinton's election. Riady and his clan showed their thanks the old-fashioned way -- they filled Clinton's campaign coffers." New York Post, 10/14/96

5. Was it a lapse in your CIA briefing or a lapse of ethics that allowed you to meet with Indonesian billionaire Mochtar Riady, a foreign national with close ties to the military junta that has slaughtered hundreds of thousands in East Timor?

"Clinton met with Riady and Huang when he visited Indonesia in November 1994, Clinton aides acknowledged this week." New York Post, 10/14/96

Robert Dole, Press Release - 2 More Questions For Clinton/Gore: The Indonesian Connection Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/315893

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