NEW YORK, Sept. 25 (UPI) -- U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called for the rich around the world to pay more taxes, drawing laughs when she said she was "out of American politics."
"One of the issues that I have been preaching about around the world is collecting taxes in an equitable manner, especially from the elites in every country," she said about 20 minutes into a 30-minute talk at the annual meeting of the Clinton Global Initiative, founded by her husband, Democratic former President Bill Clinton.
"You know, I'm out of American politics," Hillary Clinton went on, drawing a moment of laughter and applause, "but it is a fact that around the world the elites of every country are making money.
"There are rich people everywhere," she said. "And yet they do not contribute to the growth of their own countries. They don't invest in public schools, in public hospitals, in other kinds of development internally.
"And so it means for leaders telling powerful people things they don't want to hear," she said.
"It means being transparent about budgets and revenues, and bringing corruption to light, and when that happens, we shouldn't punish countries for uncovering corruption -- we should reward them for doing so.
"And it means putting in place regulations designed to attract and protect investment," Clinton said.
She did not mention the U.S. presidential campaign. Her boss, President Barack Obama, has called for the nation's richest to pay more taxes, while Republican challenger Mitt Romney proposes cutting tax rates 20 percent.
Romney also said on "60 Minutes" Sunday his tax policy would follow a study The Washington Post said indicated Romney would actually increase taxes on people earning $200,000 to $250,000 a year or less and cut them only for people earning more.
The Romney campaign had no immediate comment.
Hillary Clinton, defeated by Obama in the 2008 Democratic primary campaign, has said she plans to leave the State Department if Obama wins a second term.
Bill Clinton, who founded CGI to address major societal challenges around the world, told the CBS News program "Face the Nation" Sunday he had "no earthly idea" if his wife would run for president in 2016.
He said she planned to "take some time off, kind of regroup, write a book."
Hillary Clinton received a standing ovation after her address.
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