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Friday, March 22, 2019

Published with permission from Media Matters for America

Journalists are suggesting that a recent State Department report proves that Hillary Clinton was the first secretary of state to exclusively use a private email account for government work, contradicting Clinton’s statements. In fact, the report states that former Secretary of State Colin Powell also used a personal email account “on an exclusive basis for day-to-day operations.”

State Department OIG Report: Clinton, Powell Both Exclusively Used Private Email

Office Of Inspector General Report: Powell “Did Not Employ A Department Email Account.” According to a report from the U.S. Department of State Office of Inspector General (OIG) on email records management and cybersecurity requirements: “During Secretary Powell’s tenure, the Department introduced for the first time unclassified desktop email and access to the Internet on a system known as OpenNet, which remains in use to this day. Secretary Powell did not employ a Department email account, even after OpenNet’s introduction.” [U.S. Department of State Office of Inspector General report, “Office of the Secretary: Evaluation of Email Records Management and Cybersecurity Requirements,” May 2016]

OIG Report: Clinton And Powell Both “Used Non-Department Systems On An Exclusive Basis.”According to the OIG report: “OIG identified many examples of staff using personal email accounts to conduct official business; however, OIG could only identify three cases where officials used non-Departmental systems on an exclusive basis for day-to-day operations. These include former Secretaries Powell and Clinton, as well as Jonathan Scott Gration, a former Ambassador to Kenya.” [U.S. Department of State Office of Inspector General report, “Office of the Secretary: Evaluation of Email Records Management and Cybersecurity Requirements,” May 2016]

Clinton Campaign: Clinton “Thought It Was Allowed, As Commercial [Account] Was For Powell.” On Twitter, Clinton press secretary Brian Fallon stated: “Our take on State IG report being misreported in places so want to explain. When we liken Clinton’s email use to other secretaries… We mean that just as she used nongov’t account for work, so did others at State. And that’s bc rules did not bar use of nongovt email … Having said that, it’s true her nongovt account was on her family’s server, as opposed to commercial email account. That was distinct … But she still thought it was allowed, as commercial acct was for Powell. Now, though, State says it would’ve urged against that setup … To which we say, we agree it was a mistake. If she had chance to do it again, she would have used a account.” [, 5/26/16]

But Andrea Mitchell, Chris Cillizza Falsely Claim Clinton’s Comments Are Misleading Because She Was “First” To “Exclusively” Use Private Email

Wash. Post’s Chris Cillizza: “This Is Really Important, Clinton Is The First Secretary Of State To Ever Use Private Email Exclusively To Conduct Her Business. Period.” Supposedly showing “indisputable facts” that Clinton “got wrong” in her response to the OIG report, Washington Post reporter Chris Cillizza disputed Clinton’s statement that her use of “personal email” was “not at all unprecedented.” He commented in a May 26 blog post (emphasis original):

Er … yes, previous secretaries of state have used personal email addresses while in office — Colin Powell most notably and extensively. But, and this is really important, Clinton is the first secretary of state to ever use a private email address exclusively to conduct her business. Period. That was and is unprecedented. [The Washington Post, The Fix, 5/26/16]

MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell Repeatedly Claimed Powell Used Government Email. Purporting to “fix the record” during an interview with Clinton surrogate Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell claimed that the OIG report showed Powell “used both personal and official email.” [MSNBC, Andrea Mitchell Reports,5/26/16]

Cillizza: “Very Important Difference” Between Clinton And Past Secretaries Is Clinton Was Only One To “Exclusively Use A Private Email Address.” Cillizza claimed that the OIG report showed that “Clinton is the first and, to date, only secretary of state to exclusively use a private email address and server to conduct her business as the nation’s top diplomat” and claimed that Powell “maintained both a private and a government-issued email address.” From a May 25 blog post (emphasis original):

There are two very important differences among Clinton, Secretary of State John F. Kerry, and former secretaries Powell and Condoleezza Rice when it comes to email practices.

The first is that Clinton is the first and, to date, only secretary of state to exclusively use a private email address and server to conduct her business as the nation’s top diplomat. All of the other names above maintained both a private and a government-issued email address. That alone doesn’t make her guilty. But it does make her unique. [The Washington Post, The Fix, 5/25/16]

Photo: Democratic U.S. presidential candidate Hillary Clinton applauds at a campaign event in San Jose, California, U.S., May 26, 2016. REUTERS/Stephen Lam 

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17 responses to “In Reporting On Hillary Clinton, Media Get Facts Wrong On Colin Powell’s Private Email Use”

  1. A_Real_Einstein says:

    More Clinton BS. Powell did not set up his own server. Due to technology Powell could not use email outside the govt. hHe had to use personal email to communicate outside of the govt and he turned over all of his email immidiately after leaving office. Unlike Clinton who did not turn all her emails and turned over nothing until she was forced to and outed years later. Just nominate Bernie and let’s win this thing. Hillary is clearly a huuuuuuuge liability at this point. This is stupid.

    • Ken Walker says:

      You are stupidly wrong, Powell still has not turned over his emails. Stop making up crap to support your myopic views.

    • johninPCFL says:

      Wrong. Powell used AOL, which is “outside the govt”.
      Powell’s emails were all lost when he discontinued his AOL account. He “turned over” his emails the same way HRC (at first) did, by directing them to employees who had govt email accounts.
      Neither Rice nor Powell ever sent an archive of their emails to state, as was demanded of HRC.

      • A_Real_Einstein says:

        Powell had to use AOL to communicate with people outside the govt since the technology at the time the govt email only worked for inside the govt. A completely different time with different technology. What Clinton was completely secretive and irresponsible. We will see if she broke laws when Comey makes his report to the DOJ. At best that report will be scathing.

  2. A_Real_Einstein says:

    Why didn’t Hillary and her staff cooperate with this investigation?

  3. A_Real_Einstein says:

    How doe she explain not turning over the emails when she was supposed to?

    • Vergent Bill says:

      She had about 30,000 personal emails mixed in with about 30,000 State department emails. She hired a law firm to sort them out. This question should be directed to that law firm.

      • A_Real_Einstein says:

        Well, we are going to find out soon what was in those 30,000 personal emails, won’t we? I believe then we will be talking a lot with Hillary’s legal team.

  4. A_Real_Einstein says:

    Why did she not obtain permission to use a private server? Why is the state dept saying they would never have approved that request had she made it? Does she really believe we are that stupid?

  5. A_Real_Einstein says:

    HRC put her political security ahead of our nation’s national security. She is not qualified to be commander in chief. Feel the Bern if you want a progressive in the WH in November. HRC clearly and willfully skirted the law. Trump will mop the floor with her. We cannot afford this. We will not recover.

  6. A_Real_Einstein says:

    Hillary is probably going to get indicted. Hillary will lose to Berniie in CA. Hillary loses to Trump in the polls. 66% of the public thinks she is untrustworthy. WAKE UP SUPERDELEGATES !!!!!!!!!
    Trump will kill her and Bernie will destroy Trump. Trump is afraid of Bernie.

    • Charles Winter says:

      Hillary will not be indicted because she broke no law. Trump, on the other hand may well be indicted for tax fraud, either by the Feds (who are now auditing him), or Westchester County, NY, where he has been grossly undervaluing one of his golf courses.

    • charleo1 says:

      I know this. That we should stop allowing the Right Wingers to control the narrative on Hillary Clinton. And, I know we should not allow people who have nothing but a political agenda, to cast shadows on the presumptive nominee of the opposition Party. The only organization at this point, that can keep Trump out of the WH, and away from the nuclear codes. What is called for is some much needed perspective here, on what, or who, actually constitutes a threat to our national security.

      • A_Real_Einstein says:

        Trump is the greatest threat to our national security ever. We must put up the most likely candidate to beat him in November. Clearly that is Bernie Sanders. Ignoring the weakness of Hillary Clinton will be fatal. At this point we have no reason to believe that Hillary can beat Trump in November. Hillary is severely flawed by no fault of Bernie. She is the wrong person at the wrong time and huge target for the GOP.

    • Ken Walker says:

      This is as much of a dream as Bernie’s BS about free college and a $15 federal minimum wage. Dream on.

      • A_Real_Einstein says:

        All that would require is a bill on President Sanders desk that he would sign provided by Progressively controlled House and Senate. Can be done. We controlled both Chambers 6 years ago. It will happen again. My prediction that bill would be signed in 2019.

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