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Bush CenterHillary Clinton says she and her husband Bill went from the White House to the poor house.

In an interview with ABC News broadcast Monday, Hillary Clinton defended the six-figure speaking fees she and Bill reel in, saying, “We came out of the White House not only dead broke but in debt.”

“We had no money when we got there, and we struggled to piece together the resources for mortgages for houses, for Chelsea’s education. You know, it was not easy,” she added.

Republicans jumped on her comments — highlighting the dangers for the expected 2016 presidential candidate as she begins a massive, hyper-scrutinized publicity blitz for her new memoir, “Hard Choices.”

“This is outrageous,” Republican Chairman Reince Priebus tweeted. “How out of touch is Hillary Clinton when “dead broke” = mansions & massive speaking fees?”

At the end of Bill Clinton’s presidency, the couple indeed had big legal bills from investigations of Whitewater and the Monica Lewinsky affair.

Hillary Clinton’s first Senate financial disclosure forms, filed for 2000, listed assets of $781,000 to $1.8 million , and legal debts of $2.3 million to $10.6 million.

Still, as Bill Clinton’s presidency ended, the couple bought a $2.85 million home in Washington and a $1.7 million spread in Chappaqua. And Hillary landed an $8 million advance for her memoir, “Living History.”

By 2004, the Clintons had paid off their legal bills, and by 2009, when Hillary Clinton was preparing to become President Obama’s secretary of state, the former first couple’s wealth was between $10 million and $50 million, according to disclosure forms, which only require responses in broad financial ranges, rather than exact numbers.

Since leaving the State Department in early 2013, Hillary Clinton has been paid $200,000 per speech, although she has spoken to some groups for free.

Hillary Clinton made the “dead broke” comment when Diane Sawyer asked, “You’ve made five million making speeches? The President’s made more than $100 million?”

Clinton said, “Bill has worked really hard — and it’s been amazing to me — he’s worked very hard.”

She added, “First of all, we had to pay off all our debts, which was, you know, he had to make double the money because of obviously taxes and then pay off the debts and get us houses and take care of family members,” she said.

“I thought making speeches for money was a much better thing than getting connected with any one group or company as so many people who leave public life do,” Clinton said.

“I happen to have given lots of free speeches,” she added.

Bill and Hillary Clinton Gave Speeches to Pay Bills, Leave the White House ‘dead broke’  was originally published on praiserichmond.com