The State Department has released emails from Huma Abedin, a top aide to Hillary Clinton, that were found by the FBI on her husband’s laptop.
Some of the emails found on former Rep. Anthony Weiner’s laptop were marked classified. It was unclear whether they were deemed classified at the time they were sent or when the State Department was preparing them for release.
The emails were released in response to a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit filed by the conservative watchdog group Judicial Watch.
The State Department said it “carefully reviews the content of records requested through FOIA to determine whether any information is sensitive or classified,” and some of the documents released Friday have “classified information that has been redacted.”
The FBI found thousands of emails exchanged between Clinton and Abedin while searching Weiner’s laptop as part of a criminal investigation into his sexting with a high school student. The discovery led then-FBI Director James Comey to announce in late October 2016, as Clinton’s run for the White House was in its final stage, that he was reopening the probe of her use of a private computer server.
Then two days before Election Day, the FBI declared there was nothing new in the emails. Clinton has called Comey’s intervention “the determining factor” in her defeat.
The FBI has since said that only a small number of the emails found on the laptop had been forwarded while most had simply been backed up from electronic devices, including most of the email chains containing classified information. Comey said the FBI had concluded that neither Weiner nor Abedin had committed a crime in their handling of the email.
The question over e-mails by public officials on non-government servers has not been addressed by our current president. Maybe it’s because (i) he or his family or other advisers don’t want to be restricted, or (ii) they have have considered tightening the rules but decided it is not necessary for the protection of classified information, or (iii) they have not thought about it. Whatever it is, I think it is, at least, a major oversight.