As reported earlier this week, Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton is getting a hefty audit on her use of an unregistered personal e-mail server as Secretary of State. A view at some of Clinton’s past claims about her unauthorized email set-up contrast with the inspector general’s findings from the audit. Here are a few of those lies:
- Date: March 2015 [Press conference]
- Hillary Clinton: “The system we used was set up for President Clinton’s office. And it had numerous safeguards. It was on property guarded by the Secret Service. And there were no security breaches.”
- IG’S Findings: It was reported there were multiple e-mail hacking attempts on Hillary’s server, and she chose not report those findings to the state department. Clinton’s server was connected to the internet in ways that made it more vulnerable to hackers. It allowed users to connect openly over the internet to control it remotely.
- Date: September 2015 [AP interview]
- Hillary Clinton: “What I did was allowed. It was allowed by the State Department. The State Department has confirmed that.”
- IG’S Findings: There is no evidence Hillary Clinton was granted approval, nor confirmation from the State Department. Top State Department officials interviewed said the departments that oversee security “did not – and would not – approve” her use of a personal account because of security concerns. Hillary has since changed her statement to “I thought it was allowed.”
- Date: September 2015 [NBC interview]
- Hillary Clinton: “It was fully above board. Everybody in the government with whom I emailed knew that I was using a personal email. The people in the government knew that I was using a personal account . The people I was emailing to on the dot gov system certainly knew and they would respond to me on my personal email.”
- IG’S Findings: While some Hillary’s close aids knew about the server, senior department officials who worked for her, including the undersecretary responsible for security, claimed they were not asked to approve or review the use of her private server. Officials were also not aware the myriad of e-mails Hillary was sending through her private server per day, which would increase the chances of a security breach.
- Date: September 2015 [NBC interview, part 2]
- Hillary Clinton: “In the fall, I think it was October of last year (2014), the State Department sent a letter to previous secretaries of state asking for help with their record-keeping, in part because of the technical problems that they knew they had to deal with. And they asked that we, all of us, go through our e-mails to determine what was work-related and to provide that for them.”
- IG’S Findings: This much is true: The State Department did request records from former secretaries. However, the report says the department raised concerns about Hillary’s compliance and cooperation with federal record-keeping laws years past, and the attention did not appear to be welcoming. Furthermore, two employees in the Office of Information Resources Management voiced concerns about her use of a personal email account in 2010, stressing the information being transmitted needed to be preserved to satisfy federal records laws. They were infamously told “never to speak of the Secretary’s personal email system again” by the department director.
- Date: May 2016 (CBS interview)
- Hillary Clinton: “I think last August I made it clear I’m more than ready to talk to anybody anytime.”
- IG’S Findings: Completely false. Hillary declined through her lawyer to be interviewed for the report multiple times, while former secretaries John Kerry, Madeleine Albright, Condoleezza Rice and Colin Powell were open to discussion. She will be required to speak to the FBI as part of a separate criminal investigation into possible security breaches related to her private server.
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