Clinton defends Wall Street speaking fees as 'what they offered’

Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonDebate day dawns with big expectations for Clinton, Trump Juan Williams: Verdict on big debate will be instantaneous Judd Gregg: Debate prep and being Al Gore MORE on Wednesday night defended accepting huge speaking fees from Goldman Sachs, arguing that it won’t influence the way she treats the banking industry if she becomes president.

Speaking at CNN’s Democratic forum, anchor Anderson Cooper pressed Clinton on whether it had been a mistake for her to reel in more than $200,000 per speech for three speeches before the Wall Street giant.

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"Look, I made speeches to lots of groups. I told them what I thought. I answered questions," the former secretary of State said.

“But did you have to be paid $675,000?,” Cooper asked.

“Well I don’t know,” Clinton responded. “That’s what they offered.”

The crowd burst into laughter as Clinton explained that “every secretary of State I know has done that.”

Cooper shot back that usually the head of the State Department is not also preparing to run for president.

“To be honest I wasn’t committed to running,” Clinton said. “I didn’t know whether I would run or not.”

The former first lady said she would not be influenced by the money.

“Anybody who knows me that thinks they can influence me – name anything they’ve influenced me on,” she said. “Just name one thing. I’m out here every day saying I’m going to shut them down, I’m going after them, I’m going to jail them if they should be jailed. I’m going to break them up.”

“They’re not giving me very much money now, I can tell you that much,” she said. “Fine with me.”

Earlier in the night, rival Bernie  Sanders said a super-PAC supporting Clinton for president had taken in $15 million so far from Wall Street donors.

Clinton claimed Wednesday night that 90 percent of the donors to her actual campaign were “small-dollar donors.”