Exclusive: Transcript of Hillary Clinton Remarks to Goldman Sachs

A friend of a friend who knows a guy whose girlfriend used to work at Goldman passed along the following:

Transcript of Hillary Rodham Clinton’s remarks to Goldman Sachs partners, employees and select clients, delivered on October 24, 2013 in New York, NY.*

[Introduction by CEO Lloyd Blankfein omitted]

Begin Transcript

CLINTON: Ladies, gentlemen, distinguished benefactors.  I am most pleased to be here this evening.  At the outset I’d like to thank you all for being such good sports and turning over your phones to the Secret Service folks when you entered.  Unfortunately it’s the sort of precaution we have to take to make sure our time here tonight stays just between us.

Now I don’t know how many of you here tonight were in attendance at the speech I gave at your conference out in Arizona last March.  That was my first time speaking at a Goldman event, my first “gig” [makes “air quotes” with fingers] after leaving the State Department. And what can I say?  It was, as the kids say, a hoot.

A little background might help set the stage.  I was pretty nervous.  I’d never been offered $200,000 to share my thoughts on a subject of my choosing.  So I prepared like the Dickens.  Me and four assistants spent the better part of a week researching all the public corruption case law there is on quid pro quo payments and influence peddling.  There’s just not a lot out there when it comes to payments allegedly made for speeches, but what little there is seemed to focus on the length of the speech, not the content.

Long story short, we decided that I could say anything I wanted as long as I kept talking for at least 22 minutes.  We thought it would be a lot of fun if I read that Dr. Seuss classic Green Eggs and Ham.  So I did!  Three times!  It turns out that it’s a pretty short story, even if I read s-l-o-w-l-y.  I think I read it the last time in my Elmer Fudd voice. [Laughs] Like I said, it was a hoot.

Now if you were there, don’t be alarmed.  You won’t have to listen to the same spiel again. My speech tonight is completely new – I didn’t even bring my copy of Green Eggs and Ham.  We did a little more research after that first speech and it turns out that if you get paid a lot of money for reading Green Eggs and Ham, you just might get a nasty letter from the Theodore Geisel estate, and nobody wants that.

So tonight I am not going to focus on the length of the speech, but on the substance. Otherwise I’d have to drone on for another 16 minutes or so to hit that 22-minute sweet spot, and nobody wants that either.

Instead I am going to give you ten keys to success in life and business.  Ten nuggets of solid-gold guidance that I can get out in a couple of minutes or so, and that should establish beyond any doubt that my remuneration for these remarks is reasonable compensation and not a thinly disguised payment for access [winks at audience].

Here we go:

Number 1: Early to bed, early to rise.

Number 2: You can always add more salt, but you can’t take it out.

Number 3: Wear sunblock — I mean it.

Number 4: Buy low, sell high.

Number 5: It’s not the heat, it’s the humidity.

Number 6: Yoga. Yoga. Yoga.

Number 7: Red means stop, green means go.

Number 8: I’m really serious about the sunblock.

Number 9: The best investment you can make is in your friends.

And Number 10: Never forget, it’s good to have friends in high places.

Thank you, and good night.

End of Transcript

* I cannot completely vouch for the transcript’s authenticity or accuracy, only its truthiness.

About Conrad

Conrad O'Connor is the nom de web of a tax lawyer working in Atlanta, Georgia.
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