US: Hillary Clinton says she should have used official mail

  • Yashwant Raj, Hindustan Times, Washington
  • Updated: Mar 11, 2015 23:21 IST

Former secretary of state Hillary Clinton tried Tuesday to end controversy around her use of a private email ID while in office, saying it was purely out of convenience.

But, she conceded addressing a news conference, she “might have been smarter”, and used an official stateID from the state department, hosted on a government server.

“Looking back, it would have been better for me to use two separate phones and two e-mail accounts,” Clinton said, adding, “I thought using one device would be simpler, and obviously, it hasn’t worked out that way.”

The former secretary of state has turned over all her work-related mails she received on or sent from this ID, which was hosted on a private server at her home in New York.

Clinton, who is expected to announce her second run for the White House in April, has been hit by a series of revelations in recent weeks that have shaken up her own party.

The Clinton Foundation, which she runs with her husband and daughter, was found to have received donations from foreign governments, some with atrocious rights records.

She addressed both issues, but not to everyone’s satisfaction.

“Secretary Clinton’s press conference raised a lot more questions than it answered,” Republican House speaker John Boehner said in a statement.

Clinton is likely to continue to face pressure to explain why she deleted some emails — over half — which she said were personal, about yoga classes, her daughter’s wedding.

During her nearly four years in office, Clinton sent 62,320 emails from this private account — 31,830 of them were described as personal, and deleted.

The rest were turned over to the state department in December.

Republicans and others have said an independent arbiter should have decided which mails were work-related and which weren’t. They have only her word for it now.

To them Clinton said, the law still leaves it to the discretion of the government official to decide which mails are work-related, therefore, needed to be preserved, and which aren’t.

She broke no law, she insisted, and she never used the private mail to send classified information. Officials must forward all work related from private accounts to official account.

But this became law in 2014, two years after she left office.

Bush too, but safe

Former Florida governor Jeb Bush, who is exploring a run for the White House, also used a private email account for official correspondence as governor.

But he made them public before questions were raised.

Bush ran a minor victory lap emailing reporters on Tuesday about his disclosure of emails.

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