Wikileaks Emails Show State Department Official Coordinating With Clinton Campaign On Email Fiasco

Matt Vespa
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Posted: Nov 02, 2016 6:05 PM
Wikileaks Emails Show State Department Official Coordinating With Clinton Campaign On Email Fiasco

Hours before The New York Times broke the story that Hillary Clinton had set up what turned out to be an unauthorized and unsecure private email server to conduct official business while serving as our top diplomat, a State Department official was in contact with the Clinton campaign—offering the official response from the department over the article. The interactions will most certainly draw conclusions that State and the Clinton campaign were colluding to get ahead of the impending blowback.

Clinton campaign chair John Podesta was caught in an email exchange, courtesy of Wikileaks, with Cheryl Mills, Hillary’s former chief of staff at State, about dumping those emails. Podesta claims he meant that the emails should be released in a document dump, but they were erased via Bleachbit while under a federal subpoena that was issued on March 4, 2015. The Times reported on Clinton’s email server on March 2, 2015. The State Department said that in order to ensure accurate information was being released to the public, some communication with the Clinton camp was necessary. Fine, but it also appears that State agreed to change part of their response at the request of the Clinton campaign (via AP):

Emails from the files of Clinton's campaign chairman John Podesta show that the department official provided Clinton aides with the agency's official response to a New York Times reporter in advance of the newspaper's March 2015 report that Clinton had used a private email account to conduct all of her work-related business as secretary.

The stolen emails were released Wednesday by WikiLeaks, part of a massive trove of emails released by the document-leaking group on a daily basis since last month. WikiLeaks has indicated it intends to leak emails stolen from Podesta's account every day through the election.

In a March 1, 2015 email, State Department press aide Lauren Hickey told Clinton's team that then-State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki had "just cleared" a reply to the Times. Hickey provided the agency's response to the Clinton aides and also appeared to agree to a change requested by the campaign, saying: "Yes on your point re records - done below." It is not clear what specific change was requested and made.

State Department spokesman John Kirby said Wednesday that the department would not comment on alleged leaked documents. But he said the department's effort to "provide accurate information to the media" about Clinton's tenure at the agency has "at times required communicating with her representatives to ensure accuracy."