A report from the State Department Inspector has found that former Secretary of State and presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton did break rules by not informing her staff about her use of a private email server. The highly-anticipated report is heavily critical of Clinton’s behavior. The report could be seriously damaging to Clinton’s presidential campaign, as the current front-runner for the Democratic party’s nomination.
The report also found problems with the State Department’s record-keeping before Clinton took office. However, the report states that Clinton would not have been allowed to use the private server in her home if she had actually asked department officials for permission. A staffer who raised concerns about the private server was told to keep the information quiet, and hacking attempts in 2011 were never reported to department information security officials, which decidedly breaches department rules.
“At a minimum, Secretary Clinton should have surrendered all emails dealing with Department business before leaving government service and, because she did not do so, she did not comply with the Department’s policies that were implemented in accordance with the Federal Records Act,” the report states. Clinton has argued that she had permission to use a private email server before now.
“The truth is everything I did was permitted and I went above and beyond what anybody could have expected in making sure that if State Department didn’t capture something, I made a real effort to get it to them,” Clinton told CNN’s Brianna Keilar in July. However, the report say that the Inspector General’s office “found no evidence that the Secretary requested or obtained guidance or approval to conduct official business via a personal email account on her private server.”
However, the report does document how consistent Clinton’s email practices were with other Secretaries. This is not to suggest she is not guilty of any wrongdoing, only that her practices did not deviate too much from her predecessors’.
The report indicates that there were problems with email and records in the department even long before Clinton’s tenure as Secretary, but it does single her behavior out as highly problematic.