After going dark during Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign, the Clinton Global Initiative is back.

Sept. 20, 2022

After a six-year hiatus, the Clinton Global Initiative returned to New York City this week, bringing together leaders from the worlds of nonprofit, government and business, with a few celebrities sprinkled in for good measure. It has been an eventful few years since they last gathered in 2016.

“Why did they leave in the first place?” said Paloma Raggo, a philanthropy expert and professor at the School of Public Policy and Administration at Carleton University in Ottawa. “It wasn’t the right political climate for them to be at the forefront of things.”

The Clintons shut down the initiative because of scrutiny during the campaign. And they kept it on ice for six years for a variety of reasons. First there was the recovery from Mrs. Clinton’s defeat in the presidential election. Then the #MeToo movement brought a harsh spotlight on past Clinton ties to Harvey Weinstein and Jeffrey Epstein. Later, people close to Bill and Hillary say, Covid protocols kept them away from large crowds.

Still, to critical observers, the timing does not seem clear. “Is it because now there are issues that make it necessary, them coming here, or is it because at this point the political consequences or bad juju has dissolved a bit and they reappeared?” Ms. Raggo asked.