Chelsea Clinton Makes $900,000 for Doing Almost Nothing-Mostly Fiction!
Summary of eRumor:
A forwarded email about Chelsea Clinton making a total of $900,000 for doing almost nothing warns about America turning into an oligarchy.
Claims about Chelsea Clinton making $900,000 for doing nothing are mostly false because they’re based on outdated and false information.
Those rumors began circulating in June 2014 after Politico reported that Chelsea Clinton was paid $600,000 a year for a part-time stint as “special correspondent” for NBC News from 2011-2014.
In order to arrive at the “$900,000 for doing almost nothing” conclusion, the rumors claim that Chelsea Clinton earns $300,000 per year for her role at the Clinton Foundation. However, we have found that claim to be false (more on that later).
We’ll start out by looking at claims related to Chelsea Clinton’s work at NBC News.
The initial Politico story that broke details of Chelsea’s dealings with NBC reports:
Chelsea Clinton earned an annual salary of $600,000 at NBC News before switching to a month-to-month contract earlier this year, sources with knowledge of the agreement told Politico.
Clinton, who joined NBC News as a special correspondent in November 2011, was up for renewal or nonrenewal this year. Instead, the sources said, the network decided to keep her on the payroll on a month-to-month basis so the two parties could sever ties if Clinton’s mother, Hillary Clinton, runs for president.
New York Magazine picked up the story from there, adding that Chelsea Clinton collected that hefty paycheck “to do nothing, basically” at NBC News:
Former first child (now with child) Chelsea Clinton had a $600,000 annual contract at NBC News, Politico reports, where she served as a “special correspondent” and was deemed to be mostly useless, if not “one of the most boring people of her era.” That deal is over now, but Clinton is still being paid by the network (which has also hired Luke Russert, Meghan McCain, and Jenna Bush … ) on a month-to-month basis, with complicating factors including her pregnancy and the good odds her mother is running for president.
“NBC News continues to enjoy a wonderful working relationship with Chelsea, and we are proud of her work,” said a spokesperson.
In September 2015, Vanity Fair cited sources within NBC News who called Chelsea Clinton’s stint there “a disaster” and said that news of her sizeable salary for a part-time job had caused ripples in the organization:
Her stint at NBC was a disaster, perhaps because it ran so contrary to her instincts. “Most of us were baffled [by the hire], because she never even spoke to the press,” says an NBC veteran. “She’d walk by with the imperial stare, looking forward, and interacted not at all.” The feeling inside NBC was that she had been hired to maintain access to and curry favor with the Clintons. When news broke that she had been getting paid $600,000—for a part-time job—NBC staffers were appalled. Most full-time correspondents were being paid far less. The big salary was predicated on the idea that she was already a star, and according to an insider, she started acting like one. Colleagues felt they couldn’t communicate with her directly. Instead, they had to go through her people. And she was hardly present in the office. “There was a joke inside the building that she was the ‘highest-paid ghost’ at NBC,” says a network source. It all might have been excused had she been any good. In the span of nearly three years, however, she filed only a handful of segments—all painfully stiff reports on global do-gooders, plus an attempted comic interview with the Geico Gecko. As the insider puts it, “NBC has made a lot of bad decisions in the last few years, but hiring Chelsea has to be very near the top.”
So, it’s true that Chelsea Clinton was paid $600,000 a year for a limited, part-time role at NBC News from 2011-2014 — but she’s no longer employed there. That makes that portion of the rumor outdated.
And claims about Chelsea’s Clinton’s salary at the Clinton Foundation are just plain fiction. According to tax records filed by the Clinton Foundation, Chelsea earns no reportable compensation for her role there.
In conclusion, it’s true that Chelsea Clinton once earned $600,000 a year for her role as special correspondent at NBC News — but that’s not the case anymore. And Chelsea doesn’t earn $300,000 a year working at the Clinton Foundation, according to tax records. That’s why we’re calling this one “mostly fiction.”