US House committee subpoenas Clinton emails

Updated: 2015-03-05 16:07


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US House committee subpoenas Clinton emails

Former secretary of state Hillary Clinton delivers dinner remarks at EMILY's List 30th Anniversary Gala in Washington March 3, 2015.[Photo/Agencies]

The practice also would complicate the State Department's legal responsibilities in finding and turning over official emails in response to any investigations, lawsuits or public records requests. The department would be in the position of accepting Clinton's assurances she was surrendering everything required that was in her control.

Congress said it learned last summer about Clinton's use of a private email account to conduct official State Department business during its investigation of the Benghazi attacks on a US mission in which four Americans died, including the ambassador to Libya.

Democrats called it a fishing expedition. They say the latest probes are throwbacks to the 1990s when they say Republicans overplayed their hands pursuing President Bill Clinton.

The questions about Clinton's email practices left the Obama administration in an awkward position. At one point, the State Department directed reporters to contact Clinton, who has not publicly commented about her emails. The White House said it was her responsibility to make sure any emails about official business weren't deleted from her private server.

Meanwhile, the AP said it was considering legal action against the State Department for failing to turn over some emails covering Clinton's tenure as the top US diplomat after waiting more than one year. The department has never suggested that it doesn't possess all Clinton's emails.

State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf said the department will review for release the emails Clinton provided.

"We will undertake this review as quickly as possible; given the sheer volume of the document set, this review will take some time to complete," Harf said.

Clinton _ who emailed so frequently using her BlackBerry as secretary of state that it became an Internet meme _ is particularly sensitive about disclosures of personal files based on her experiences in confronting congressional investigations and civil lawsuits during her husband's election and presidency and her own roles as first lady, senator, presidential candidate and Cabinet official.

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