Hillary Clinton, presumptive Democratic Party nominee for president, was cited by an inspector general for the State Department for failing to comply with records’ rules that call for her to preserve emails and messages and to share them with her government colleagues before leaving office.
The report was released on Capitol Hill on Wednesday, and while auditors said the State Department suffers from “longstanding, systemic weaknesses” over records’ maintenance that goes “well beyond the tenure of any one secretary of State,” Clinton is flagged for her personal, private email server that she set up in her New York home.
“Secretary Clinton should have preserved any Federal records she created and received on her personal account by printing and filing those records with the related files in the Office of the Secretary,” the report states. “At a minimum, Secretary Clinton should have surrendered all emails dealing with Department business before leaving government service and, because she did not do so, she did not comply with the Department’s policies that were implemented in accordance with the Federal Records Act,” a portion of the audit stated, according to Politico.
The auditors also found the entire State Department and its secretaries “slow to recognize and to manage effectively the legal requirements and cybersecurity risks associated with electronic-data communications, particularly as those risks pertain to its most senior leadership,” the Associated Press reported.
Political analysts have been watching the progression of Clinton’s email server scandal for months, particularly as polls have consistently shown voters by and large view her as a dishonest candidate.
The inspector general’s findings, contained in a 78-page report, aren’t exactly surprising, given the abundance of media coverage Clinton’s home-based email server as already received, the latest of which involves the FBI’s investigation into the security risks it presented. But they do give more arrows to Donald Trump, whose campaign has taken to calling Clinton “Crooked Hillary” in recent references.
Republicans, predictably perhaps, pounced on the report as yet another sign of Clinton’s inability to lead.
“This detailed inquiry by an Obama appointee makes clear Hillary Clinton hasn’t been telling the truth since day one, and her and her aides’ refusal to cooperate with this probe only underscores that fact,” said Reince Priebus, Republican National Committee chair, in a statement. “Although Clinton has long claimed her practices were like those of other secretaries of State and allowed, the report states she was in clear violation of the Federal Records Act.”
He also said spoke directly to Clinton’s presidential aspirations, saying the report clearly shows she’s unfit for the high office.
“The stakes are too high in this election to entrust the White House to someone with as much poor judgment and reckless disregard for the law as Hillary Clinton,” Priebus said.