State Dept Defends Claim It Will Take 75 Years to Process Clinton Emails: 'It's Not An Outlandish Estimation'

Leah Barkoukis
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Posted: Jun 08, 2016 8:30 AM
State Dept Defends Claim It Will Take 75 Years to Process Clinton Emails: 'It's Not An Outlandish Estimation'

State Department spokesman Mark Toner defended its estimate that it would take 75 years to release the emails from Hillary Clinton’s top aides during her time as secretary of state on Tuesday. He noted that the RNC’s court filing contained an “enormous amount of FOIA requests” that are “very complex.”

“It’s a very broad range involving a number of people over a period of four years,” he said. “It’s not an outlandish estimation believe it or not.”

In March, the RNC filed a pair of lawsuits seeking the emails after having failed to receive the documents from State in requests filed last October and December.

“The Obama administration has failed to comply with records requests in a timely manner as required by law,” Chairman Reince Priebus said in a statement at the time.

The RNC's FOIA request is seeking emails from three of Clinton's former aides: Cheryl Mills, Jacob Sullivan and Patrick Kennedy. 

"Given the Department's current [Freedom of Information Act] workload and the complexity of these documents, it can process about 500 pages a month, meaning it would take approximately 16-and-2/3 years to complete the review of the Mills documents, 33-and-1/3 years to finish the review of the Sullivan documents, and 25 years to wrap up the review of the Kennedy documents — or 75 years in total," the State Department argued in the filing.