Wednesday, March 04, 2015

Latest on Hillary Clinton and Emailgate


Representatives for Hillary Clinton maintain that there was nothing improper or illegal with her use of a personal email account while she was serving as the Secretary of State.

Was Clinton ignorant of the law? Ignorance of the law by a person who commits an offense is not an excuse for committing that offense. Or she knowingly violated the law.

Either way, that should be a big problem for someone who wants to be the next President of the United States.

From Fox News:
The computer server that transmitted and received Hillary Clinton's emails -- on a private account she used exclusively for official business when she was secretary of state -- traced back to an Internet service registered to her family's home in Chappaqua, New York, according to Internet records reviewed by The Associated Press.

The highly unusual practice of a Cabinet-level official physically running her own email would have given Clinton, the presumptive Democratic presidential candidate, impressive control over limiting access to her message archives. It also would distinguish Clinton's secretive email practices as far more sophisticated than some politicians, including Mitt Romney and Sarah Palin, who were caught conducting official business using free email services operated by Microsoft Corp. and Yahoo Inc.

Most Internet users rely on professional outside companies, such as Google Inc. or their own employers, for the behind-the-scenes complexities of managing their email communications. Government employees generally use servers run by federal agencies where they work.

Read more....

State Department employees are issued an email address after being hired and are required to attend a security class within a certain period.  The security class addresses issues like how to protect passwords (something some NSA employees didn't do when asked by Snowden for theirs), avoid phishing and other scams, etc.  Yet Clinton thought the rules and procedures didn't apply to her.

Any Federal employee knows, and is required to receive training, that the use of personal email for official government business is inappropriate. First, private email services are much more likely to be hacked because they don't possess the security facilities of federal email services. Second, the use of private email services does not assure that the government maintains a record of all official government correspondence. This would have been one of the first things Hillary would have learned when she became Secretary of State.

Anyone with even a smidgen of government experience, to paraphrase a certain individual, knows that all email generated on government computers is considered official business and treated and archived as such.  The rules are very clear about that.

Hillary's interpretation as conveyed through her spokesperson is strained at best.  Any communications she had as Secretary of State in her official capacity are not her property, but the property of the United States Government, and the mere fact she sent them out on a private email network does not diminish the official nature of those communications.

The excuse that she didn't have a government email account is laughable. You mean that as Secretary of State she didn't have the clout to be provided a government email account? Ridiculous.

More likely, Hillary was too SPECIAL, to be required to follow Federal legal guidelines. It might have been inconvenient.

There's also a double standard.  If one of George W. Bush's cabinet appointees had done something, the Dems would be howling.  But like her misrepresentations about landing under fire are similar to the NBC anchor's misrepresentations, the consequences are quite different.  One gets suspended, the other is considered a leading candidate to be nominated for president.

More than anything else, I would have thought this represents a potential security breach. One would have to assume a fair amount of highly classified information was transmitted this way.

I would also assume her personal email is not encrypted, potentially at very high risk for hackers.

Finally, we recall how the President had to go through great pains to be the first President allowed to have email and keep his valued blackberry (limited number of people with his address etc) . No doubt the same rules apply to the Secretary of State? I'm sure there's a code of conduct that prohibits this activity that she willfully ignored.

According to a New York Times article, it suggested she used this account for all correspondence. The article states that she did not have a secure State Department account.  If that's the case then surely some of the correspondence sent via the personal account during her tenure had to have been classified.


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