Hillary Clinton’s email scandal just won’t go away. In fact it seems to keep getting worse every week.
The original transgression, in which Hillary Clinton, the presumptive Democratic nominee for president, kept classified State Department emails on a private home email server for the sake of “convenience,” against the government’s protocol, has morphed into an affair where it seems that just about every statement out of Hillary’s mouth is a lie.
First, she claimed that there were no classified emails on her server. Later, she said she had never sent or received anything that was classified at the time it was transmitted.
Still later, she acknowledged that there was material that she hadn’t turned over to the Department of State, despite swearing under oath that all her non-personal emails had been supplied to investigators. Ultimately, it was discovered that many of these emails did, in fact, contain classified information.
Political commentators always argued that the reason Clinton wanted her emails on a private server was so that they would not be subject to disclosure in the face of a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request, which is common for members of the press or researchers to file when they’re working on stories or reports.
A FOIA request compels the government to make public any non-classified information from any governmental branch, department or source; it cannot be refused or unreasonably delayed.
It’s common for reporters and other journalists to make FOIA requests in the wake of someone’s departure from a high government office (or even while they’re still occupying it) — for instance, Clinton’s when she stepped down from her position as secretary of state.
What’s now come out is that while she was serving as secretary, Clinton sent a specific email to one of her deputies that outlined her intent in keeping a private email server at home — to keep her messages from being publicly “accessible,” to use Clinton’s own word.
This caused the government’s Inspector General (IG) office to issue a scathing report that stated Clinton had violated government regulations. But even worse than the IG report is the prospect that this proves that Clinton intended to violate the U.S. Espionage Act.
The Act mandates that government officials are not allowed to permit national defense data to be “lost, stolen, abstracted or destroyed” via gross negligence — which is exactly what Clinton did by storing her emails privately.
It’s one thing to innocently claim that keeping such emails on a home server was for convenience’s sake, but when a message like this is discovered, it clearly shows the intent that nullifies her previous argument.
This was in addition to continuing to use a private Blackberry communication device after the State Department’s own personnel warned her that the handheld gadget was not secure.
This was also after the Obama White House specifically told Clinton to use a government email account for all her messages. And it was in spite of the fact that Clinton opened spam messages on her server that contained data-accessing viruses linked to Russian hackers.
And finally, it was after it was revealed that Clinton never signed an OF-109 statement confirming that she had turned over all her official documents to the government at the end of her reign as head of the State Department, as all Department officials are required to do (and as the Department’s own employee manual instructs).
Clinton had a company called Perfect Privacy enter meaningless information into contact fields for her server domains rather than use the names of her State Department employees who were helping her to maintain her server.
It also now appears the server was sharing the same physical space with a mail server for the Clinton Foundation, meaning that if any Foundation employees’ accounts were hacked, the hackers could easily have gained access to Clinton’s emails as well.
Whether this new message proves to be the last straw as far as earning Clinton a Justice Department indictment and possible jail time is up in the air. But as with each previous revelation, Clinton’s prior excuses aren’t holding water in light of the new evidence.
The IG report combined with recent testimony to the FBI by her aides — including her personal assistant and “body woman” Huma Abedin — could be the final nail in the coffin for Clinton’s campaign before it swings into high gear in the Fall.
One can only hope that the FBI will do a thorough job in completing their investigation prior to delivering a report to the Justice Department.
~American Liberty Report