Sunday, September 13, 2015

DOJ Debunks Media Speculation That Hillary Clinton's Email Use Was Illegal

A legal brief recently filed by the Department of Justice (DOJ) reportedly explains that former Secretary of State Hillary "Clinton was within her legal rights to use of her own email account, to take the messages with her when she left office and to be the one deciding which of those messages are government records that should be returned" -- contradicting conservative media speculation that she may have violated the law.

The media has repeatedly scandalized Clinton's email use, speculating that that she may have "violated federal requirements" or committed a felony and arguing that her email use "was not permitted." 

But, according to the Department of Justice, "[t]here is no question that Secretary Clinton had authority to delete personal emails without agency supervision -- she appropriately could have done so even if she were working on a government server." From The Washington Times

The Obama administration told a federal court Wednesday that former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton was within her legal rights to use of her own email account, to take the messages with her when she left office and to be the one deciding which of those messages are government records that should be returned.

In the most complete legal defense of Mrs. Clinton, Justice Department lawyers insisted they not only have no obligation, but no power, to go back and demand the former top diplomat turn over any documents she hasn't already given -- and neither, they said, can the court order that.

The defense came as part of a legal filing telling a judge why the administration shouldn't be required to order Mrs. Clinton and her top aides to preserve all of their emails.

"There is no question that Secretary Clinton had authority to delete personal emails without agency supervision -- she appropriately could have done so even if she were working on a government server," the administration lawyers argued. "Under policies issued by both the National Archives and Records Administration ('NARA') and the State Department, individual officers and employees are permitted and expected to exercise judgment to determine what constitutes a federal record."

The legal brief said that means employees are required to "review each message, identify its value and either delete it or move it to a record-keeping system."



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