I believe we’re seeing a pattern here. Apparently, Hillary Clinton didn’t want anyone but herself to be able to use a personal email account for federal government business. That seems to be the only conclusion that can logically be drawn.
In 2007, as noted here at LU earlier on Thursday, Hillary complained that people in the Bush administration were using “secret email accounts” to avoid public scrutiny. According to her, these people were engaged in “shredding the Constitution.”
Next we learned from Jeff Dunetz that in 2012, Hillary’s State Department forced out the ambassador to Kenya, Scott Gration, because he was using a private email account for government business. (Emphasis added)
Gration’s independent streak and insistence on doing things his own way, outside of the interagency policy process, ran afoul of the embassy staff in Nairobi almost immediately. Multiple sources familiar with the disputes confirmed reports Friday that Gration preferred to use his Gmail account for official business and set up private offices in his residence — and an embassy bathroom — to conduct business outside the purview of the embassy staff.
(Granted, I would have thought the “private office in the embassy bathroom” thing was a bit creepy. Not sure I want to know what that was about.)
Now, on Thursday evening, Fox has uncovered yet another instance of Hillary demanding that other people do as she says, not as she does.
It turns out that in 2011, she ordered the entire department, in an internal cable, to refrain from using personal email accounts for government business.
Sent to diplomatic and consular staff in June 2011, the unclassified cable, bearing Clinton’s electronic signature, made clear to employees they were expected to “avoid conducting official Department business from your personal e-mail accounts.” The message also said employees should not “auto-forward Department email to personal email accounts which is prohibited by Department policy.”
The cable underscores that government policy strongly discouraged officials from using personal email and violators faced disciplinary action, even though Clinton for years relied exclusively on hers – and her own server — to conduct official business. The White House, without condemning Clinton’s activities, has made clear that employees were urged to use government accounts.
The 2011 cable, bearing the subject line “Securing Personal E-mail Accounts,” told employees to secure personal/home email addresses, given increased targeting of government employees by “online adversaries.” It also emphasized that these personal accounts should never be used for government business and cited department procedures which prohibit the practices.
Let’s revisit that Hillary Clinton email account timeline. She set up her own domain and email server, in her home, in January 2009, the day her Senate confirmation hearings began. The purpose of this was clearly to ensure that no third party could be subpoenaed to produce the content of her emails sent through that account.
Hillary continued to use her private email account for State Department business throughout her tenure at Foggy Bottom, which ran until 1 February 2013. During that time she issued the internal cable directing others to use only their government email accounts, and forced the resignation of an ambassador, in part for using personal email to do state business.
A couple of days ago, Michael Tomasky gave it the old college try making the case that there was nothing that really happened here, because government-wide regulations on the administration of email records weren’t updated until August of 2013 – after Hillary left – and the State Department didn’t formally implement those regs until October 2014.
Bless his heart. Hillary outright violated her own rule for two of the four years she held the office – not just violated it, but built her own “alternet” to violate it. I kind of admire her sand. Come the revolution, we’ll put her in charge of evading the NSA eavesdroppers.
* UPDATE *: You can’t make this stuff up. In a perfect Leadership 101 twist, we now learn that the State Department Inspector General found a pattern of illegal use of personal email accounts in the department during Hillary Clinton’s tenure. This in spite of her 2011 cable directing everyone to refrain from using personal email accounts for government business. Apparently, they weren’t too dumb at State to just do as Hillary did, and not as she said. Your mother’s old adages: right again.