CHERYL MILLS TESTIMONY, SEPTEMBER 3, 2015: From page 228 until the end
Ms. Jackson. All right. We are going to start hopefully our final hour. I think it should be our final hour.
BY MS. JACKSON
Q: Ms. Mills, when did you first learn that Secretary Clinton did not want to use an official government email account?
A: Secretary Clinton had her own email account from when she was a Senator. And when she came —
Q: Was that a personal one or an official one?
A: She used a personal one as a Senator, an AT&T one, if I recall. And when she came into the State Department, she continued to use her personal email address.
Q: Okay. When she was a Senator, did she have an official government account?
A: I don’t know. I didn’t work for her when she was a Senator, so I don’t know the answer to that question.
Q: Okay. When did she change her personal email address from the AT&T one to the clintonemail.com one?
A: I believe that happened sometime in March. I only say that because I know that we had to change email addresses where we emailed her, and that’s the time period that I remember that happening, sometime in March.
Q: Did she discuss this with you, or did she just inform you 229 what she was going to do?
A: I recall she was going to be using her personal email account because it gave — like what she said — her the convenience to be able to email her family and friends as well as email about work. And so what she’s articulated is probably the best recollection I would have at that time, yeah.
Q: Did you offer any opinion or try and dissuade her from doing that?
A: I don’t recall that I did or that I didn’t. I knew that there had been a prior Secretary who had used a personal email, so I don’t know that I had a thought process around that one or way or the other. I might have, but I can’t take myself back to that moment.
Q: And did you know that in January, February, March of 2009?
Q: And how did you know that?
A: I understood that because Secretary Powell, at least as I understood it at the time — there were others in the Department who were familiar with that, as well. And I might have learned it in other ways, too. But I do know that I was aware that he was one of the people who had used a personal email account.
Q: And is that information that you sought out?
A: No. Quite candidly, I don’t know that I really thought much about email at that time. I know everyone does now, but I don’t know that I did.
Q: Okay. Who at the Department knew that? 230
A: I don’t know. Because — I don’t know how to basically take myself back to that moment.
Q: Uh-huh. Did Patrick Kennedy know?
A: I don’t know. I don’t know, like, how to recreate a time period where that wasn’t something I was focused on. So I don’t know.
Q: Well, who was at the Department at the time that Secretary Powell was there that you interacted with on a regular basis?
A: Well, there were lots of folks who were obviously — look, the Department is filled with career and noncareer officials. But my impressions was that that was something he had done. He had recommended that when — when there were — all the Secretaries met that read his book. I knew it was in his book. Because that was one of the things we were doing also as you come in, is learning about other people’s experiences. But I can’t tell you — I can’t tell you that I have a cognizant moment of how that information was transparent to me.
Q: Okay. Was anyone consulted about Secretary Clinton exclusively using a personal email address for her work?
A: I don’t recall that. If it did happen, I wasn’t part of that process. But I don’t believe there was a consultation around it, or at least there’s not one that I ‘m aware of– maybe I should better answer that way – – based on my knowledge.
Q: So no private counsel?
A: Not that I’m aware of. 231
Q: Okay. The general counsel for the State Department?
A: Not that I’m aware of.
Q: Okay. Anybody from the National Archives?
A: Not that I’m aware of. But I can only speak to my knowledge, obviously.
Q: Sure. And anyone from the White House?
A: Not that I’m aware of.
Q: Okay. What was your opinion of whether it was a good idea or not?
A: I don’t know that I focused on it the way that I of course now wish I had. My own observation was that, to the extent it allowed her to be able to connect with her family and connect with work, that is how she used it. And I don’t know that I had more reflection on it.
Q: Were you aware of the Federal Records Act as a statute?
A: Yes. I am aware of the Federal Records Act.
Q: And the regulations and State Department policies that govern the records management of the State Department?
A: So I think what I have learned about the State Department through this process is I would have anticipated that the Department email would be maintained and so that, when she was communicating with staff on their State accounts, that that would be something that was maintained. So I would have told you that at the time. I’ve come to learn that that is not, obviously, the case. But that’s what I would have 232 told you if you were asking me at that time. That’s what I at least understood.
Q: Did you use an official government account, a state.gov account?
A: I did.
Q: Okay. And why did you make that choice?
A: I don’t know that I reflected upon it that deeply. There was an ease in which, if you were on the system, everybody’s email would populate. But I don’t know that I reflected on it other than that was my email account so I was using it.
Q: And did you have a personal email account at the same time?
A: Yes, I’ve always had a personal email.
Q: And you use that for family and friends?
A: I typically use that for family and friends, that’s correct.
Q: Who all in the State Department was aware of the Secretary’s exclusive use of a personal email account?
A: A large number of people, primarily because that’s how she communicated with her staff in the Department and she would communicate with others outside the Department, as well. So it was certainly a number of folks that would be aware.
Q: Did it go down to the Assistant Secretary level?
A: There were Assistant Secretaries that she would email. Toria Nuland — “yes” is the short answer. Yes.
Q: Okay. Do you recall whether she could email with Jeff Feltman or Beth Jones? 233
A: Yes, she could email with them. I don’t know if she did, but she could.
Q: Did they have her personal email address?
A: I don’t know. I mean, I think at different times people might or might not have her address. You know, in the day, because as a practical reality she worked in a SCIF, she couldn’t email during the day because her BlackBerry had to be locked up outside. So, when she was working during the day, as a practical matter, it was typically the case that she would be engaging by phone or in person. And she’s the Secretary. She gets to really rock ops. You know, she gets to use the operations department however she wants, which means they find anybody and everybody for her at a dime.
Q: How did people get her personal email address?
A: She would email them. Or if somebody wanted her email address, they might ask myself, they might ask Huma, they might ask 1111111 who was her assistant, for her email address. They might ask any number of people for her email address.
Q: Were the three that you’ve listed you, yourself, Huma, and — was it 1111111
A: was her executive assistant.
Q: Were the three of you that were primarily responsible for deciding who would get her personal email address? 234
A: No. She would email people if she wanted to email. So, 1 But we would be people who would know it. But there were also other people. People would ask Jake. They would ask, you know, Wendy Sherman. They would ask Bill Burns. If there were people who were aware of her email address, they would ask for it if they thought they needed it.
Q: Do you recall whether anyone ever brought it up to her that it wasn’t a good idea to exclusively use a personal email address?
A: I don’t have a memory of that. So I obviously can’t speak for her.
Q: Okay. You have described before as to how the A Bureau was the repository of documents to respond to any number of requests out there. Did the
A: Bureau know that she was exclusively using a personal email address?
A: I don’t know the answer to that question.
Q: Let me ask this. Did you ever inform them?
A: I never had a conversation with the A Bureau about that, but I wasn’t frequently in a conversation with the A Bureau. So I think the real place where information might have f l own would be, obviously, in her front office with the special assistants. But I don’t have a recollection of ever having had a conversation with the A Bureau, and I don’t know if she would have. I would be surprised, but I don’t know.
Q: Did you direct anyone to tell the A Bureau to be on the lookout for responsive records that would have been sent to or from 235 her personal email address?
A: No. But, obviously, if she was emailing someone to their State accounts, those, at least as I understood it, would be captured.
Q: Okay. Did you or anyone else instruct the A Bureau that they needed to look at the other senior leader members’ email accounts to look for her records?
A: So each individual was accountable for producing their records, and so you had to produce your records, as opposed to the A Bureau coming into your office to produce them. When they would sent the request out, each person had to go through and produce their records.
Q: So you never relied on the IT department to go in and do a search of records?
A: I don’t know that they did or didn’t. And I don’t know what their capacities are. And I’m even less certain as to their capacities today than I was when I was there.
Q: Okay. And did the senior leadership have a separate IT department?
A: There is a division called POEMS. I don’t know that POEMS only deals with the senior leadership, but I know that there was a — well, certainly, when I had issues with my computer or my technology, there was a unit I could call and say, “Could you please help me?” And I don’t know how to think about their relationship to the rest of the broader IT, but it was my sense that they would try to be responsive to us and to me. And so that made me think of them 236 differently. But I don’t know, if you actually looked at it in an org chart, whether or not they were.
Q: Would you please tell us about your knowledge, awareness, or involvement in the campaign server being relocated to the Secretary’s personal use?
A: I didn’t have any involvement in that, so I can’t.
Q: Okay. Did you know that it was happening at the time?
Q: Okay. When did you learn?
A: I’ve learned subsequent to all of these matters that have been raised.
Q: Okay. And when was that?
A: I don’t know that I could tell you when that would have been. Like, I don’t know that I have a time window on when that was, because I have obviously learned a lot more about all of this in the last 6 months to – – 6 to 8 months. So I don’t know how to answer your question. I don’t know the answer to that.
Q: Okay. Was it when the State Department contacted you about seeking return of the Secretary’s records?
A: No. The server that she had during the tenure where she was at the Department was the server that ultimately she migrated from when she left the Department. So I don’t know that it would have been at that juncture, actually. It might have been at an earlier juncture.
Q: Are we talking two different serve r s? I didn’t quite follow your answer. 237
A: Well, so, when she was at the Department, there was a server that now is at the Justice Department that hosted all of her emails. She left the Department in February, and, at some point, her emails and the emails of her family ended up being hosted by Platte River Networks. And so that transition would have happened after she left. And the server that had hosted her emails when she was here would have been the server in question.
Q: Okay. During her tenure as Secretary of State, was there just one server?
A: To the best of my understanding, as I sit here, but I obviously didn’t have contemporaneous knowledge of that. But that is my best understanding.
Q: Okay. And do you where that server or have you subsequently learned where that server was physically located?
A: That server, as I understand it, was physically located at her home.
Q: Which home?
A: Good question. Chappaqua. Her home in New York, as I understand it.
Q: And who told you that?
A: I don It know the answer to who told me where the server was.
Q: Did you have a conversation with Secretary Clinton about that?
A: No, I didn’t. I’m trying to figure out who would have told me where the server was. It could have been any number of folks as 238 we were stepping through trying to understand the set of circumstances that surrounded her email. But I don It know that I could tell you who was the person
Q: Who would be in that group of names?
A: Individuals that would be in that group of names might be, certainly, her household — one of her former households advisors, which was Other individuals who might have — I could have learned that through the process of — who else would have known about it? He Is probably one of the more logical people I would have learned that from, but it could have been others who had actually talked to other people who were sharing that with me, as well.
Q: And you described as her household assistant?
A: No. He was somebody who managed different matters related — he was a senior advisor to the President and a personal assistant to the President, but he also handled a number of their household matters.
Q: Okay. And where is he these days?
A: He lives in New York.
Q: Okay. And still in that same position?
A: No, he does not work there.
Q: Do you know where he works there?
A: I don It know where – is working now. I believe he is mainly consulting, but I could be wrong about that.
Q: Okay. 239 Have you subsequently learned who set up the server in the New York home?
A: I have subsequently learned that through reading and other matters who, at least as I understand it — but I don’t have any firsthand knowledge of that. My knowledge of that is obviously through the processes that I have been participating in to learn.
Q: So you never had a conversation with Secretary Clinton about that?
A: I didn’t have a conversation about who set up the server in her house with her, correct.
Q: Okay. What about with David Kendall?
A: Certainly with David Kendall I’ve had conversations.
Q: About the server?
A: So David Kendall’s her personal counsel. I also provide her personal counsel. And so, in the course of our conversations of responding to requests that have come not only from Congress but that have come from agencies about this matter, we have tried to be thoughtful in providing the best information that we had that was consistent with our obligations to her.
Q: Okay. And did you discuss with Mr. Kendall the server?
Ms. Wilkinson. Can we go off the record a moment?
Ms. Jackson. Sure. [Discussion off the record.]
Ms. Jackson. We’ll go back on the record. And let me withdraw the question and ask another one. 240
BY MS. JACKSON:
Q: Do you know a Bryan Pagliano?
A: I do know Bryan Pagliano.
Q: And how do you know him?
A: Bryan Pagliano provided technology advice on the Secretary’s campaign in 2008 when she ran for President. And, subsequent to that time period, Mr. Pagliano ultimately ended up being an employee at the Department. He was one of the Schedule C employees that was hired during the time that Secretary Clinton was Secretary.
Q: Okay. He was a Schedule C employee?
A: I believe so. I might be misstating that, so don’t quote me on that, but he was certainly an employee who joined during her tenure.
Q: Okay. And what’s the significance of being a Schedule C employee?
A: Am I wrong about that?
Q: I don ’t know.
A: Oh, okay. So I don’t want to go all the way down a path if I’m wrong.
Q: Yeah. Yeah.
A: But what I would say is he was somebody who was hired during her tenure. And so there are a set of appointments that, as each Secretary comes into the Department and as each administration takes over from the prior administration, they have the privilege and opportunity to appoint talent that they believe are going to achieve 241 the goals and objectives of their administration or of that particular department or those particular priorities and initiatives. And at least it was my impression that he might have been in one of those slots.
Q: Okay. And he was an IT person?
A: He was somebody who had a technical background, that’s correct.
Q: In maintaining information technology systems?
A: I don’t know the breadth and scope of his skills. I don’t know that I can speak to that. But I do know that he was somebody who I would describe as somebody who had technology expertise.
Q: Okay. And is that what he did for the campaign?
A: For the campaign, part of his responsibilities was, obviously, managing a lot of the technology issues, but I think he had a broader portfolio than that.
Q: And what was that broader portfolio?
A: I don’t know. Like, I don’t if he was also doing some of the admin or other things that might be related and bundled with kind of dealing with technology and other things like that. So that’s the only thing. I don’t know.
Q: Did you have any role in his being hired at the State Department?
A: I don’t have a recollection of that — or, necessarily, I would or wouldn’t have. It is certainly the case that, when talent was being considered, our White House liaison would actually interview everyone. And one 242 of the things that is certainly the case that Secretary Clinton sought t o do was people who she thought were talented and wanted the opportunity to serve, to make sure that they were interviewed. And then they would be sent to different departments for interviews. And if the Department determined that they wanted to hi re them, then that became the way in which I would get slates to say, these people are now getting ready to be hired. So I would imagine he would have been in a context like that, because that is typically how we operated.
Q: During the time that he worked well, let me ask this first. Do you know the timeframe that he worked for the State Department?
A: I don’t. I don’t think he was there in the beginning, but I can’t tell you when he arrived.
Q: Okay. And did he l eave contemporaneously with the Secretary or shortly thereafter?
A: I don ’t know. I don ’t know.
Q: Okay. Do you know whether he played any role in maintaining the private server that was at her New York home?
A: I’ve come to understand that. That was not something I had knowledge of during the time period I was at the Department.
Q: Okay. And when did you first become knowledgeable of that?
A: As I’ve been stepping through this process of providing advice and guidance.
Q: Okay. 243 To your knowledge, was there any intrusion or breach of her server during her tenure as Secretary of State?
A: Not to my knowledge.
Q: At any time was the server down for any reason, not functioning?
A: That might have occurred. And I just am going to give you my best understanding. That might have occurred, obviously, during — there has been different weather and other things, so that clearly could have occurred. I don’t know that I had contemporaneous knowledge, and I don’t know that I have any specific knowledge right now, but quite plausible that that could have occurred.
Q: Okay. Stepping back to Mr. Pagliano, what department did he work in when he was at the State Department?
A: I believe he was in the technology department.
Q: Okay. Was that the same technology department that you would call on when you would need assistance, or was it a different one?
A: It was a different– I don’t know that they are different departments, but the division that I would be engaging with is called POEMS, and he was not a part of that.
Q: Did you know who he reported to?
A: I don’t know who he reported to. But I know he was in –I know he was in at l east the technology department, so I would have assumed he would report to the head of that, the CIO or the head of 244 the super bureau that might have been associated with it. So those are — I acknowledge my assumptions.
Q: Is it your understanding that when official business is conducted via personal email that electronic records of that official business being conducted is a Federal record?
A: I am now much more sensitive to that. But, yes.
Q: Were you aware of it during your tenure with the State Department?
A: I would have answered that question if you’d asked me in my tenure at the State Department that, yes, records were records of the work of the Department. It was my observation that that typically is how people were also using their State Department records — their State Department emails. But that would have been my answer at the time.
Q: Okay. And any type of official record or Federal record belongs to the agency; is that also your understanding?
A: That’s my understanding, yes.
Q: Okay. And so it is not property, such as it is, of the individual, but it’s property of the agency?
A: I think that, as a general matter, when you are dealing with emails, because sometimes they have both things in them, it does — meaning by “both things,” I mean sometimes agency matters and sometimes personal matters, when you are in people’s personal accounts, that there can be blended materials. But, otherwise, I would certainly say that the agency has the right to the materials that are agency 245 materials.
Q: And if an email is solely agency information, then it belongs to the agency?
A: That is what I understand.
Q: Were you contacted in the summer of 2014 regarding Secretary Clinton’s Benghazi-related documents being discovered with her personal email address?
A: I was contacted about the Department — that they were going to be providing the final tranche of documents that had been collected and that in those materials were materials that reflected her email address.
Q: Okay. And that was the final tranche of records that were going to be produced to this committee?
A: As it turns out now, to this committee, as opposed to the prior committee for which they had been collected, as I understand it.
Q: Okay. And who contacted you?
A: At that time, I ended up engaging with the chief of staff in the Department, whose name was David Wade, and their communications partner, whose name was Jen Psaki.
Q: The spokesperson for the State Department?
A: She was a spokesperson for the State Department at that time.
Q: And what was relayed to you in that conversation?
A: That they were anticipating that there would be potentially media inquiries around a set of materials that they would be providing 246 to Congress, and included in that set of issues was her personal email account and address.
Q: There were media inquiries?
A: They were anticipating they would get media inquiries.
Q: Okay. But the —
A: So they were preparing for what they anticipated to be inquiries that would come once the materials were provided.
Q: But these were materials to this committee, not going to be released via a FOIA?
A: Or, at least, that is my best understanding.
Q: Okay. And did you have a series of conversations with Mr. Wade and/or Jen Psaki?
A: I know I talked to them more than once, but I couldn’t tell you if it was more than twice. But I know that I did have more than one conversation.
Q: Okay. And were you the only person they were communicating with on behalf of the former Secretary?
A: No, because this was actually a communications matter. The other person who was with me in this communication was a gentleman named Philippe Reines.
Q: Okay. And do you recall when this occurred?
A: This would have been, I think, late summer. That’s my best 247 memory.
Q: Do you know whether the documents had already been delivered to this committee?
A: It was my impression that they were going to be delivered, and the questions that they were posing related to matters that they believed might be the subject of media inquiries that they would get, and they were seeking information and understanding to be able to respond to those. That’s my best recollection.
Q: And what were those questions?
A: I don’t know, but I know that her — like, I don’t have a perfect memory of what were the four or five things that they thought were going to be likely, potentially, the subject of media inquiries. But I do believe that — I do know that one of them was with respect to her personal email address, which would be being made available.
Q: Okay. And can you recall any of the other topics?
A: No. I just said that.
Q: Did you have meetings with any individuals at the State Department?
A: Those were the individuals that I met with.
Q: That you met personally with them?
Q: And was Mr. Reines there?
A: Yes, Mr. Reines was, as was Ms. Psaki, because the 248 conversation was revolving around the communications that they anticipated her having to answer in terms of questions that she might get related to a set of issues that they would have anticipated.
Q: And what were her questions to you?
A: I don’t recall her having per se questions to me. But I do recall that they were anticipating that there would be media inquiries as a result of producing the materials, and they wanted to ensure they had as accurate information as they could relay.
Q: Okay. And was there any discussion about seeking return of more records from the Secretary?
A: Not at that time. That was subsequent to that. That was much later.
Q: When did that occur?
A: That happened later in the fall, when they concluded that the Department didn’t maintain all records of the Department.
Q: And who did you converse with regarding that?
A: At that time, I remember, obviously, David Wade was present, but I remember that the other participant at that time was a member of the counsel’s office, whose name is
Q: Okay. So the Legal Advisor to the State Department’s office?
A: I think he’s a deputy legal advisor. I believe Mary McCloud is the Acting. But that’s my best understanding.
Q: And, again, was this a meeting or a telephone call?
A: So I recall one meeting and a telephone call. Those are 249 the things that I recall.
Q: And with David Wade and the representative from the Legal Advisor’s Office?
A: So the meeting, I recall, was with David Wade and the representative from the Legal Affairs office, who had indicated that they had learned that they didn’t have necessarily comprehensive records. And they were going to be stepping through a process to determine how to address that with all the Secretaries.
Q: And you say they learned that they didn’t have comprehensive records. How did they learn that?
A: I didn’t ask. I mean, I think — I think everyone understood that the point of electronic records is you have them, but apparently that was not accurate.
Q: Okay. Did you disclose to them at the time that her personal email records would be housed on her private server?
A: I don’t know that I had a cognizance of the private server in that framework, so I don’t know how to answer your question, because of the way it’s framed. But at least what we indicated, once we understood the nature of the challenge, was that we would obviously speak to Secretary Clinton to learn how she would want to respond once they shared whatever letter they were going to be sending so that we could best understand what would be our approach in that regard.
Q: And you said this was later. Can you give us a better idea 250 of the timeframe?
A: I can’t tell you. I think in September or October they would have indicated that they anticipated that they were going to be needing to augment their records and would be making a request to do that. I didn’t actually get the request that they sent until the end of October, and that request was actually directed to Condi Rice, but it was sent to me, and so they then had to correct that.
Q: Okay. So that would have been late October or early November when that occurred?
A: That’s my best understanding. Late October — I think late October would have been the first letter, which would have been the one that was for Condi Rice that came to me. And then they subsequently would have replaced that letter, and that, I believe, would have come within the next 30 days or so, yeah.
Q: Okay. Prior to receipt of that letter, did you have any knowledge that they were going to reach out to other former Secretaries other than Secretary Clinton?
A: At the time, when they were explaining the challenge that they confronted, they explained that that challenge was potentially one that was more than just the last few years. And so they were going to be assessing what they needed to do to ensure they had at least tried to get as comprehensive a set of records as they could.
Q: Okay. And what steps did you take after — or, actually, what steps did you take after you had this meeting, even before you 251 got the letter, to attempt to gather Secretary Clinton’s records?
A: So what our objective was was to understand what was the scope of records that they didn’t have. Because if what they didn’t have was records that were — that they had everything on the state. gov, then it becomes a much easier exercise. But once they made clear that it was broader than that, that their own records might not be also reflective of just state.gov, then it became a different set of exercises.
Q: Okay. So, again, this was the fall, late October, November, of 2014 when the State Department was aware that they did not have virtually any of Secretary Clinton’s records.
A: I don’t know that it’s “virtually any” because, at least as I understand it, what they would capture would be — when she’s emailing people, they would capture people on the State records, but they weren’t always maintaining individual State records. So if you were an employee and your records happened to be one of the ones that they weren’t maintaining or that got taped over, while they might have at one point had those communications, they had not maintained them.
Q: Okay. And when did you first learn this? Was it before this time in late October, early November?
A: So my best recollection is that I learned that sometime in the fall because I was — I can just remember being surprised by it. So it would have been at the late summer or September time, October time period, in that time period, where we gained a deeper understanding of what the breadth of the challenge was. 252
Q: Describe for us the process that you went through, you and others went through, to then identify, collect, review, and turn over Secretary Clinton’s records — return the Federal records to the State Department.
A: After the letter came, Secretary Clinton asked David Kendall and myself to oversee a process to ensure that any records that could be potentially work-related were provided to the Department. And so we stepped through that process by first reviewing her personal email account during her tenure for all records that had dot-gov, and that meant you could set aside a large swath of them as records that could be provided.
Q: How did you get those records? Did you or Mr. Kendall physically have the server at this time?
A: No. I know there’s a lot of focus on that server. Boy. So that server, as I understand it, doesn’t contain any of her records. So we asked Platte River to give us a PST of all of her emails during the tenure where she was there, which they did. And we used that PST to first search for and set aside all of the state.gov records, then to actually do a name search of all of the officials in the Department so that we could ensure that all the senior officials that she would likely be corresponding with got looked at and searched for by name, and then a review of every sender and recipient so that you knew, if there was a misspelling or something that was inaccurate, that you would also have that review done, as well. And then that created the body of, I think, about 30,000 emails 253 that ended up being ones that were potentially work- related, and not, obviously, completely, but it was the best that we could do, meaning obviously there were some personal records that are turned over, and the Department has advised the Secretary of that.
Q: Okay. When you say “we” did this, “we” reviewed for state.gov and things, was that you and Mr. Kendall?
A: So we oversaw the process. The person who actually undertook it is a woman who worked for me. She’s an associate. Her name is
Q: Okay. Did she have any specialized training or skills in the Federal Records Act or identifying official records?
A: She’s a lawyer by training. She also had served time in the counsel’s office, so she has a set of understandings of what would be required.
Q: Okay. And by “counsel’s office,” the State Department’s counsel’s office?
A: White House Counsel’s office.
Q: White House Counsel’s office.
Q: Okay. What happened to the universe of the PST file once the potentially Federal records were segregated out?
A: So the potential set of Federal records, we created a thumb drive that David Kendall kept at his office. And then the records
themselves, that would have been the universe that they sent, Platte River took back.
Q: They took the PST file back?
A: So they just removed it. So it ended up being onsystem, and they just removed it. And I don’t know what is the technological way they do it, because it’s a way you have to access it, and then they make it so you can’t access it anymore.
Q: You said Mr. Kendall retained a copy. Did you retain a copy?
A: On Ms. computer there was one copy of the 55,000 pages with the 30,000 emails, and that was the copy that was retained.
Q: Okay. You also returned records to the State Department, you personally; is that correct?
A: Yes, I did.
Q: Okay. What is the volume of the records that you returned to the State Department?
A: I don’t know the answer to that question for two reasons, but I returned back — I had trip books from Haiti or other things like that. So there were hard -copy documents that I returned back. And then, with respect to my own emails, I gave my counsel my inbox so that — I mean my all-mail box for the period of time where I was in the Department, and they reviewed it and provided the documents to the Department.
Q: And you don’t know what that volume is? 255
Ms. Jackson. I believe perhaps our Members have some questions, so I’m going to make sure that they have sufficient time to ask their questions.
Ms. Mills. Thank you.
Mr. Gowdy. Ms. Mills, I’m trying to understand, was your first being alerted a letter from Patrick Kennedy that the State Department was not in possession of the full public record, or had you had previous conversation with someone in the State Department?
Ms. Mills. So the conversations that I had wit h the Deputy Counsel there, with David Wade, at that time it was not transparent, but at least it was clear that they believed that there might be a need for them to augment their records and that they were going through to learn what they had and what they didn’t have. But they were, at least at that time, concerned that their records were not complete.
Mr. Gowdy. Did they address how they complied with either FOIA or civil litigation requests during the time period when they were not asking for the return of the public record? Ms. Mills. So, in my conversation with them, that didn’t come 1 So I guess “no” is the answer to your question.
Mr. Gowdy. Okay. Did you have any conversations with Patrick Kennedy about the return of her public record prior to receiving the letter?
Ms. Mills. My conversations were actually with the Deputy 256 Counsel. And then I received a letter from Pat Kennedy.
Mr. Gowdy. So you and Mr. Kendall both, as her counsel, oversaw the determination of what was purely private, purely public, or you said blended, I say mixed use.
Ms. Mills. Mixed use, yes. And we had some mixed use, which al so were provided to the Department. That’s fair.
Mr. Gowdy. All right. And how many were determined to be purely personal ?
Ms. Mills. I know that about half of them in the end ended up being purely personal, if I remember correctly. So, if there were 30,000, there were would be another 30,000 that would be likely in the personal.
Mr. Gowdy. All right. Secretary Clinton gave three categories that would fit the description of purely personal : yoga practice, Chelsea’s wedding, and correspondence with the former President. Those are the three she cited when she was asked about it. Do you know, of those three categories, of the 3e,eee, how much does that constitute?
Ms. Mills. No, I couldn’t — I didn’t go through the 30,000. So, no, I have no idea.
Mr. Gowdy. You didn’t go through any of the personal?
Ms. Mills. So the senior associate I had was going through them, as opposed to me going through them. So I wasn’t sitting and going through them. But I couldn’t tell you that. I know that her personal, obviously, would encompass a whole scope of things, but I couldn’t tell 257 you how many of them would have been in any of those categories or another category per se.
Mr. Gowdy. Can you give me an example of a mixed -use email that you reconciled in favor of disclosure or production?
Ms. Mills. They’re all being produced up on the Web. Sure. Some of them might be –there’s an ops alert, and then she says, do you know where my ring is, or do you know where my dress is, or do you know where my particular item of clothing is. There are some of those that are being produced. Or, can someone bring me something to drink. There are a number of them that kind of, in the context of other matters that are being discussed, there’s a personal item that actually ends up being discussed in the context of these.
Mr. Gowdy. There were 15, 9 in whole and 6 in part, that were not produced to the State Department from Sidney Blumenthal. Do you know how those 15 escaped production to the State Department? Ms. Mills. No, you know, because what we would have shared would have been what was in her records. Just as I am not certain why he also doesn’t have some that she has. So I don’t know the answer to that. I just know that that’s the fact, that I know she had some he didn’t have, and he had some she didn’t have. But I can’t tell you how or why that is.
Mr. Gowdy. So you and Mr. Kendall did not personally review the 60,000. You had or hired or had an employee do that for you.
Ms. Mills. She did that, and she undertook that work, obviously, diligently. But part of the process was to make sure that there was 258 a process of both taking all the state.gov, which was about 26,000 or 27,000 of them, and then looking for the names of everybody in the Department and in the government, as well as some Members, obviously, and then going to review sender and recipients to ensure that everything had been captured. So it was a three-prong process.
Mr. Gowdy. Do you know if anyone else at the State Department had a clintonemail.com email address?
Ms. Mills. Yes.
Mr. Gowdy. Who?
Ms. Mills. Huma Abedin.
Mr. Gowdy. Was that it? Just her?
Ms. Mills. She’s the only one I’m aware of.
Mr. Gowdy. Sidney Blumenthal, did you receive his memos?
Ms. Mills. I sometimes would occasionally receive his memos. I learned in the process how prolific he was and realized I probably wasn’t receiving a lot of them. But I did receive on occasion some of his emails.
Mr. Gowdy. Did you know who they were from when you received them?
Ms. Mills. Typically, in the instances where I would have gotten any of Sidney’s emails, they were from Sidney. They were about a book his kid was doing or other things as well. Or, if they were about –
Mr. Gowdy. So you got emails directly from him.
Ms. Mills. Yes.
Mr. Gowdy. I was more referencing the ones he sent to Secretary 259 Clinton.
Ms. Mills. Oh. Sorry. So I often wasn’t copied on those. I apologize. What’s your — so tell me your question.
Mr. Gowdy. The ones that he sent to Secretary Clinton, were you either copied or received a forward of those?
Ms. Mills. As it turns out, I often did not. I know that, obviously, because I’ve been looking at them. But I’m sure there was an occasion where I would have been, but a lot of them were forwarded to other colleagues that I might not.
Mr. Gowdy. Do you know whether or not it was ever contemplated that he would work for the State Department?
Ms. Mills. Yes.
Mr. Gowdy. And how do you know that?
Ms. Mills. Because when the Secretary was assessing whether or not and how we could actually think about some of our transatlantic engagements, Sidney was identified as someone that we thought could be valuable in that process. And so I stepped through a process with him to learn whether or not he could or could not serve. And then, when raising that with the White House, they expressed reservations about him. And so we didn’t hire him.
Mr. Gowdy. Do you recall who specifically at the White House raised reservations?
Ms. Mills. I don’t. Unfortunately, there are a number of non-fans of Sidney Blumenthal, so it could have been any number of people. 260
Mr. Gowdy. So the Secretary wanted to hire him, and he wanted to work there, but it was nixed — is that a fair word to say? — nixed by the White House.
Ms. Mills. I think it was fair to say that they expressed their — at least their opinion that that would not be a good idea, and so we took that into account in not hiring him.
Mr. Gowdy. Okay. You told Ms. Jackson that you recently returned records to the Department of State.
Ms. Mills. I have returned records to Department of State.
Mr. Gowdy. And how would those records have come to be in your possession and not the State Department’s possession?
Ms. Mills. So I had copies of — when I was serving as the envoy t o Haiti, I had copies of trip books. And those trip books I returned. I had materials that a l so, when the Secretary was being –during the transition period before she became Secretary, they produced transition notebooks. I don’t know what they consider those, because, obviously, they’re giving them out to someone who might not get confirmed. But those are kinds of materials I returned, in addition to any emails that were personal emails of mine that had any kind of work-related matters in them.
Mr. Gowdy. What prompted your return of the public record to the State Department?
Ms. Mills. The letter that we had received from the Department. 261
Mr. Gowdy. So you viewed the letter in the fall as not just including the former Secretaries of State but also folks who worked with them. Or was there a separate letter?
Ms. Mills. Which letter are you speaking of? Sorry.
Ms. Mills. Well, which one were you -So, I got a letter to me, Cheryl. to the letter to me, Cheryl. So I was responding
Mr. Gowdy. When did you get the one to Cheryl? Ms. Mills. I received that in May, maybe? March? I’m not sure, but I received that in the spring of -Mr. Gowdy. Of this year?
Ms. Mills. 2015. Correct.
Mr. Gowdy. So 6 months after Patrick Kennedy wrote you about the return of her public record.
Ms. Mills. Yes. And my understanding is they were asking — they first were, at least as I understand it, asking the Secretaries and then asking the staffs of prior administrations. But I don’t have, obviously, visibility into how broad that is or how they were doing that.
Mr. Gowdy. Does it not strike you as at all unusual that they would wait 20 months to ask a Secretary of State to return the public record?
Ms. Mills. I don’t know, because I don’t know how they would have been assessing it from their side. I think that – –
Mr. Gowdy. Well, the reason I asked — I don’t want to interrupt 262 you. Go ahead.
Ms. Mills. Oh, no. I appreciate it. I think that, certainly, I was of the impression, so it wouldn’t surprise me if other people were as well, that the State Department’s electronic system captured records in realtime. And I think there’s been a greater learning by a broader number of individuals that that didn’t end up being the case.
Mr. Gowdy. You had earlier said a large number of people were aware of her email arrangement, the exclusive use of personal email. And, if that were true — and I have no reason to doubt that it is true – – it makes one wonder why you waited 20 months to establish that the public record was complete.
Ms. Mills. Look, I wish more than anybody that that would have been something that I thought about or that anybody else would have thought about separate and apart from the Department thinking about what their own record keeping abilities were or weren’t. I wish I had. I don ’t know that I can change what is, but it certainly is the case that I wish I would have thought about it.
Mr. Gowdy. Well, I don’t often get to say this, but Congress actually did think to ask that question. And they wrote the State Department and wrote the Secretary, in particular, and asked whether she ever used personal email. Did you see that request?
Ms. Mills. I don’t believe I did. I’ve obviously become aware of it since I left the Department, but I don’t believe so.
Mr. Gowdy. All right. Would you agree with me that that would 263 have been a really good time to alert Congress —
Ms. Mills. Yes. And if I had seen that, I would have said that the answer to the questions being posed would have required reflecting that she has an email address and what that email address is.
Mr. Gowdy. But when I factor in your earlier testimony that a large number of people knew and it did not appear as if there was any effort to keep this a secret —
Ms. Mills. I would agree that a number of people knew about her email account; that’s correct.
Mr. Gowdy. Okay. And there I’m sure my colleagues will correct me if I have the number wrong — there have been seven prior congressional investigations into Benghazi. I ought to know that number, I’ve heard it so often, but I think it is seven.
Ms. Mills. Does that make you lucky number eight?
Mr. Gowdy. I don’t think there’s anything lucky about it. But why did none of the previous seven inquiries prompt the State Department to seek the return of the public record?
Ms. Mills. Well, her records were collected in the records that were to be provided. So I think — I can’t answer for why or what prompted different decision making or questions, but there are instances of her email being provided as responsive to requests that had come. And so —
Mr. Gowdy. But those would have been emails that were captured by the state.gov site.
Ms. Mills. Correct. 264
Mr. Gowdy. Those would not have been emails from her server. Ms. Mills. Correct. They would not have been emails from her personal account. Correct.
Mr. Gowdy. And there would be no way for the ARB to have had the benefit of the full public record when they made recommendations to you.
Ms. Mills. They would not have had emails from her account other than the emails that reflected her communications with staff about work and about Benghazi, which would then be captured in the materials that they would have had access to and would have been in the A Bureau materials, because there were some of them in there.
Mr. Gowdy. So it’s fair to say that some of these state.gov recipients or senders would have been captured by the public record, but there would be no reason for private email to private email to have ever been captured.
Ms. Mills. That’s accurate.
Mr. Gowdy. Okay. And Huma Abedin used private email with which to communicate on private email with the former Secretary of State. Did you ever use private email with which to conduct business with the former Secretary of State? Ms. Mills. As a general matter, I used State email. That was just my practice. I’m confident there are, no doubt, occasions where I would have used my personal email — if I was traveling, the system were down, if I was home and I couldn’t fob on or it was easier because 265 I was dealing with my kids. But, as a general matter, I was a State email user. That was my overwhelming practice. I wasn’t perfect, so I often would have personal things on the State email, and I’m sure there are instances where I likely would have had State on my personal. But my general practice and my body of email scope is in the State email scope.
Mr. Gowdy. Did Mr. Blumenthal have a particular interest or expertise in Libya?
Ms. Mills. I don’t know. It was my impression that Sidney’s expertise was in transatlantic matters, but I don’t know that he might not have expertise in other areas. But I can only tell you my impression is his areas of expertise were on the transatlantic side.
Mr. Gowdy. Did you know any of his sources of information?
Ms. Mills. No.
Mr. Gowdy. I had not — if I had seen this article on Mr. Maxwell before, I don’t recall it. And I know you’ve answered it twice, so I’m going to get in and get out quickly. He makes a lot of very specific factual assertions.
Ms. Mills. He does.
Mr. Gowdy. Are any of the factual assertions accurate? And when I say “any” — Ms. Mills. I haven’t read that to look at each of the factual assertions.
Mr. Gowdy. All right. I’ll give you a couple.
Ms. Mills. Well, the assertion that I know is not accurate is 266 that I had an engagement with him where I even had a conversation with him to say, what is he doing here?
Mr. Gowdy. Well, that is what I was going to ask you.
Ms. Mills. And Mr. Sullivan said, You know who Ray Maxwell is? Like, it did not happen.
Mr. Gowdy. All right. Could it have been accurate that there were weekend document sessions?
Ms. Mills. There were. I would imagine that people had to be working on the weekend, and I’m sure I was there on a weekend. I don’t, obviously, have a perfect memory of each day and when it was a weekend and when it was not, because we were working pretty hard. But it is certainly the case that I had asked for people to be fully dedicated to be able to try to get documents out as quickly as they can, and so people would have been working around the clock.
Mr. Gowdy. Could it be accurate that there is something colloquially referred to as the “jogger’s entrance”? Ms. Mills. I don ’t know, because I’m not familiar with the jogger’s entrance.
Mr. Gowdy. Is there a space outfitted with computers and big-screen monitors intended for emergency planning?
Ms. Mills. We have emergency centers throughout the facility, s o, yes, there are a number of those.
Mr. Gowdy. Would there ever have been a circumstance where you and Mr. Jake Sullivan and Mr. Maxwell would have been in the same room together? 267
Ms. Mills. Not that I recall.
Mr. Gowdy. But you recall with specificity not only did you never tell him what he alleges — do you recall with equal specificity that he was not part of any document accumulation or production process?
Ms. Mills. I don’t know what NEA might have had as an independent process. He was not part of the process of the team that NEA had sent. There was another woman who NEA had sent as their designated full-time body, if you will. And so I would have remembered if it was an African American man instead of a white woman. And it was a white woman who was assigned.
Mr. Gowdy. Did the ARB interview you?
Ms. Mills. No.
Mr. Gowdy. Did the ARB interview Secretary Clinton?
Ms. Mills. No.
Mr. Gowdy. Why not?
Ms. Mills. I don’t know. I can only give an impression. And I don’t know why they didn’t —
Mr. Gowdy. That’s fine. You can give me an impression.
Ms. Mills. Okay. Thank you. The purpose of the ARB is to learn in a particular instance what occurred and whether or not the security in those moments was adequate and what should be done better, if not. And it is to write a report to the Secretary for that. So I am not familiar with an ARB — and I only knew of one other one when I was there — where they would have interviewed the Secretary 268 as opposed to actually be providing that information to the Secretary for the purposes of making an assessment about the events. Because they are looking at the events that happened on the ground, and typically that involves a body of people beyond the scope of most of the people in Washington, but it’s not always the case. So it didn’t surprise me that they didn’t. And I don’t know that I would have expected it one way or the other. They did brief her and step her through what they were finding, but they did not interview her.
Mr. Gowdy. All right. That’s a fair point. Do you view one of the goals of the ARB to be complete in its factfinding?
Ms. Mills. I think that’s the objective, is to be able to provide as comprehensive an understanding of what happened in a particular incident, how it was handled.
Mr. Gowdy. If there were, hypothetically, 10 eyewitnesses to an incident, how many of those eyewitnesses would you expect the ARB to interview?
Ms. Mills. If they were actually eyewitnesses to the incident, if they had the ability to interview 10, I would imagine that they would interview 10.
Mr. Gowdy. And if there were, hypothetically, a universe of 10,000 relevant documents, how many of those 10,000 would you expect the ARB to access?
Ms. Mills. I don’t know. I don’t know how they would manage through that, because it is a large volume, so there might be a strategy that they would have for how they assess what — 269
Mr. Gowdy. That came across as a trick question, and it was not intended to be so.
Ms. Mills. Oh, okay. It did.
Mr. Gowdy. It was not intended to be so. My point being, if it is really complete, you are going to access all of the witnesses and al l of the documents to the extent you are able to. Is that fair?
Ms. Mills. I think, certainly, that might be an approach that someone might take, yes.
Mr. Gowdy. Okay. Do you view past ARBs as being cumulative?
Ms. Mills. Tell me what you mean when you say that.
Mr. Gowdy. The findings and recommendations of past ARBs, do we — in other words, do we need to rediscover the wheel, or are past ARB findings also to be given respect by subsequent Secretaries of State?
Ms. Mills. Oh, now I understand. Thank you. It was my impression that the recommendations of ARBs are supposed to have an enduring life, meaning that the learnings that came from those ARBs should be acted on and implemented. But it was also my observation that there had been ARBs before where recommendations had been made that had not been implemented. And so part of Secretary Clinton’s commitment and focus was how do we actually make sure these recommendations are actually implemented, given that there are were some that had not been in the past.
Mr. Gowdy. So, in other words — I think you and are in agreement — Secretary Kerry should not fail to heed the recommendations, even though they came during a previous tenure. Ms. Mills. Are you getting ready to get me in trouble? 270
Mr. Gowdy. No. No, I’m not. No. That’s my last question on 1 I’m just trying to establish if they’re cumulative in nature.
Ms. Mills. Yes, they are cumulative in nature.
Mr. Gowdy. Okay. And whose job is it to make ARB-like recommendations before the tragedy takes place? Who within the State Department is charged with figuring out these — because it took about 2 months to come up with 30 recommendations. That’s pretty quick. And it’s a big number. So who within any State Department’s job is it to come up with recommendations with respect to safety and security before something bad happens?
Ms. Mills. With respect to safety and security, we obviously rely on our Diplomatic Security to provide us with the best advice and recommendations and practices based on their expertise. And there are likely other bureaus and departments that could contribute in that same regard, but, certainly, when we thought of security, we think of our Diplomatic Security officials as the experts in that space.
Mr. Gowdy. Was a trip to Libya in October of 2012 being contemplated?
Ms. Mills. It might have been. I just don’t recall. I actually 271 don’t recall at this moment. I’m sure there was a time where I did know. But it might have been.
Mr. Gowdy. Let me ask you in a different way.
Ms. Mills. Okay.
Mr. Gowdy. I think you testified earlier that Ms. Abed in handled travel arrangements for Secretary Clinton.
Ms. Mills. Yes. And they had already been, I thought, to Libya on one trip and
Mr. Gowdy. Yes.
Ms. Mills. Okay.
Mr. Gowdy. Did she handle travel arrangements for anyone other than Secretary Clinton?
Ms. Mills. No. So, when we were doing trips or travel, she also oversaw the schedule and the creation and the operations of all of those different elements. So she was kind of the operational deputy, if you will, for matters related to the Secretary’s travel.
Mr. Gowdy. So if she were in a process of meeting and planning in connection with a trip to Libya in the fall of 2012, it could not have been for anyone other than Secretary Clinton. Ms. Mills. That’s correct.
Mr. Gowdy. Okay.
Ms. Mills. She typically would be handling it for the Secretary. She would not be handling it for someone else. Or, at least, I’m not aware of her making travel arrangements for other people other than the Secretary. 272
Mr. Gowdy. But you are not aware of a trip being discussed, planned, otherwise contemplated for the fall of 2012. Ms. Mills. I just don’t remember it. I’m not saying that if you had talked to me at that time I wouldn’t have said, oh, yes, I heard they’re thinking about that. I just don’t remember it right now.
Mr. Gowdy. Okay. 273 [ 4 : 37 p.m.]
Mr. Gowdy. Talking points that were derived at by the CIA — I’m sure someone will correct me if I’m wrong — but my recollection is that either Mr. Morell or someone else said his first iteration of talking points was changed at the recommendation of seventh floor principals at the Department of State. Do you know who he could have been talking about?
Ms. Mills. No, and that’s not my recollection, so that might be shaping my answer.
Mr. Gowdy. So there was never an iteration of CIA talking points that assigned a higher degree of culpability to the State Department than those which became public?
Ms. Mills. That might have been the case. But if your question is whether or not I have a recollection of Mr. Morell saying he was changing something at the direction of the State Department, that is what I didn’t have a recollection of.
Mr. Gowdy. All right. Take Morell out of it.
Ms. Mills. Okay. Sorry.
Mr. Gowdy. Just in genera l, CIA talking points, an iteration that assigned more culpability to the State Department than the iteration that became public. Do you recall that?
Ms. Mills. So what I recall is that there was at least a lot of discussion around the talking points and my challenge is that my recollection is after the fact when the talking points became an issue 274 as opposed to simultaneously. I don’t know that simultaneously I had a contemporaneous understanding of the different back and forths on the talking points. But I do know that there was always this enduring challenge, at least from my perspective — but I acknowledge I was sitting at the State Department — that the CIA seemed to have an opinion about their actions and the propriety of how they’d been handled and the Department’s, and what they saw as what might have been a distinction in that. So that was my overarching impression. Separate and apart from just the talking points, that was my overarching impression.
Mr. Gowdy. All right. Well, I want us to stick with that theme for just a second. Susan Rice went on five Sunday talk shows, and at least in two of them, if my memory serves, made reference to a video that appears nowhere in the intelligence talking points. What was the genesis of her attributing the attacks to the video?
Ms. Mills. I don’t know the answer to that question. I know that she had received preparation materials and points, and I’m assuming that that’s how she relied on them and she relied on them to relate what she related on the program. But I don’t know, because I didn’t participate in her prep or in the materials for her prep.
Mr. Gowdy. Who prepped her? Ms. Mills. So she has a team of folks at the U.N. who are her talent both on — from a communications side and her deputy, who is fabulous, a gentleman named Rexon Ryu, who would have been her primary 275 partners in preparing her.
Mr. Gowdy. How would anyone at the United Nations be in a better position to advise her on what happened in Libya than the CIA or the State Department?
Ms. Mills. I’m sure they probably would have provided materials so that she would have been able to speak to the issues that she did, and so she would have been relying on materials that have been provided to her.
Mr. Gowdy. Have you seen any materials that attributed the attacks to the video from our intelligence agencies?
Ms. Mills. I just don’t remember. I don’t remember that one way or another now. If you had asked me at the time, I could’ve told you the answer to that. I don’t remember that now. Like, I don’t know if there was ever an instance where there was something that somebody said was or wasn’t. I remember that in the beginning it was much more around a discussion of the nature of the events that night. And so that’s my memory.
Mr. Gowdy. Did you watch her performance on the Sunday talk shows?
Ms. Mills. I did not.
Mr. Gowdy. How soon thereafter did you learn that she had attributed it to a video and/or spontaneous reaction to a protest?
Ms. Mills. I am certain that I would have learned in the days after that. I couldn’t tell you if it was exactly the next day or the 276 day after that1 but I would have learned in that time window.
Mr. Gowdy. Were you then or have you ever been in possession of any factual predicate that would support either of those 1 either a protest spun out of control or the video?
Ms. Mills. As I understood the background material that had been prepared by our intelligence community, they had given a set of points that she was relying on. So my impression was that that was a part of their points. That might not be accurate. That’s just my impression.
Mr. Gowdy. I think your second impression was accurate1 which is when she said video it shocked everyone 1 including Mike Morell and the authors 1 which leads to my question: At what point does the State Department have a duty to correct something that was falsely said?
Ms. Mills. So I don’t know that I had a shock reaction because I didn’t watch her program, but in terms of what she said 1 I think part of the enduring challenge — and this is what I was speaking to earlier is 1 how you make sure you’re giving the most accurate information that you have. I don’t know what was the genesis of obviously all of the different elements that were a part of her performance. It was my distinct impression she was using intelligence and points that had been extracted from those that could be shared with the public to do that. But I couldn’t tell you what they were and how she reached her own conclusions around that.
Mr. Gowdy. Okay. A couple more questions then I will turn it 277 over to my colleagues. Were you present for any phone calls that Secretary Clinton made to any foreign leaders in the hours or days after the attacks in Benghazi?
Ms. Mills. I might have been. I say that only because I was in and out of the office, so it’s completely plausible that I was in as she was making a cal l and walked out to go do something, so it’s plausible. But I don ’t know that I have a specific memory of any of the different leaders. I do recall when she was reaching out in — for Tunisia, because we had a whole set of issues about how we could potentially provide support, that I got a readout after that call. So I know I wasn’t present for that call because there were certain due-outs for that, but I don’t have a specific memory of different leaders as she spoke to them.
Mr. Gowdy. Are you aware of any ambassadors that had Secretary Clinton’s private email address?
Ms. Mills. I don’t know.
Mr. Gowdy. There was a memo, 1 year and 1 day prior to the attacks in Benghazi. There’s an email from Jake Sullivan to Secretary Clint on, subject: “Rogers apparently” — and the body is, “apparently wants to see to talk Libya/weapons.”
Ms. Mills. Who’s Rogers?
Mr. Gowdy. We don’t know. It could be Mike Rogers, who is the former HPSCI chairman. I was going to ask you. 278
Ms. Mills. Sorry. I’ve already revealed my ignorance.
Mr. Gowdy. Is there anyone last name Rogers that you could think of that would want to tall< to Secretary Clinton about Libya and weapons?
Ms. Mills. No, I don’t know, obviously.
Mr. Gowdy. Do you know anything about Libya and weapons? Ms. Mills. No. No. I mean, obviously, I know that one of the concerns from a policy standpoint was that there would potentially be loose weapons after the fall of Qadhafi and during that time period and a desire to ensure that they didn’t fall into the wrong hands. And that is probably the breadth and scope of my weapons knowledge.
Mr. Jordan. I just want to be clear. So is the attorney who works for you in your firm or in your part of your business?
Ms. Mills. Yes.
Mr. Jordan. And she is the individual who was responsible for overseeing the production of the emails that were deemed government or mixed or private email? Ms. Mills. So the Secretary asked David Kendall and I to undertake that, and I asked 1111111 to step through the process of actually doing the work is probably the best way to say that.
Mr. Jordan. But the search terms and the parameters and the scope and how it was done, that was developed by you and Mr. Kindle?
Ms. Mills. She stepped through a process that we had blessed, if you would say.
Mr. Jordan. Okay. I want to go back to the ARB, if I could. 279 Just to be clear, from a few hours ago, I guess, did you request a draft copy or did it just show up on your desk? How did you get the draft copies?
Ms. Mills. They provided me with a draft copy. I don’t have a recollection of requesting it, but they did provide me with a copy. What I can’t answer is whether or not I would have expected that or not expected that.
Mr. Jordan. Okay.
Mr. Cummings. Let me go off the record for a minute. [Discussion off the record. ]
Mr. Jordan. I want to go back to, I think it’s the “Come to Jesus,” number 8, I think. I think that’s what it refers to when you say
Ms. Mills. Come to. The come-to email.
Mr. Jordan. Is that what you mean? I just assumed that it was — maybe that’s a false assumption, but that’s
Ms. Mills. No, you’re right. I ‘m Baptist.
Mr. Jordan. Same here. I’m not Baptist but close enough.
Ms. Mills. What are you?
Mr. Jordan. Evangelical, non-denominational. My dad has had “Come to Jesus “ meetings with me.
Ms. Mills. He’s a good man. Come on over to the Baptist side. We’re good people.
Mr. Jordan. So in this email, “Had a little come-to with some of our colleagues but folks now on board.” Who are colleagues? 280
Ms. Mills. So colleagues were individuals, at as least I remember, in the intelligence community. And some of that, as I said, related to my observation around the certain propensities to seek to mislay responsibilities.
Mr. Jordan. Okay. And when did you have that come-to-Jesus conversation with colleagues? Ms. Mills. It would’ve been likely on the phone, probably contemporaneous or around that time period.
Mr. Jordan. Okay. Because this email says — it regards the hearings, congressional hearings. And you say, just starting — this is to, I think, Secretary Clinton — and to Philippe Reines. Is that accurate?
Ms. Mills. Yes, I think so. Let me just grab it so that I have it in front of me so that I’m being a better partner to you. Okay. I have it.
Mr. Jordan. So are you just — so “just starting, had to have a little come-to -Jesus conversation with our colleagues, but folks now on board.” Ms. Mills. Yes.
Mr. Jordan. So were these folks, these colleagues, were these people testifying in front of that committee?
Ms. Mills. Oh, I don It know that they would have been testifying. Those might have been two different things that were going on. She was asking how the hearings were going, and I wasn’t necessarily paying attention because I was having another set of conversations that were 281 going on. So that’s my best recollection. And I was then saying1 Philippe is up there with them. He might have better information about what’s happening up there because I had been paying attention to something else.
Mr. Jordan. So let me just go to that. So Philippe is up there with them. Is the “them” referencing the colleagues?
Ms. Mills. So she was asking how are the hearings going. So the “them” is Philippe is up there with whoever is testifying at the hearings. I didn’t know what was happening other than they were just starting because I had been involved in another matter1 which was sharing my concern that people were not being good interagency partners. And that was something I shared a couple times.
Mr. Jordan. So the colleagues doesn’t necessarily refer to them1 or does it refer to them? I mean 1 is it the same answer? That’s what I’m trying to figure out. It seems to me 1 “just starting1 “ the hearing’s just starting1 and I just had a conversation, a come-to-Jesus conversation with people who were at the hearing1 I assume testifying, and Philippe is up there with them. So it almost sounds like you’re trying to influence in a big degree, if it’s a come -to kind of conversation 1 what people are going to say in front of a congressional hearing. That’s how I read it in context.
Ms. Mills. Right. No1 that’s not accurate.
Mr. Jordan. All right. Then tell me what is accurate. 282
Ms. Mills. So let me try to — sorry — do a better job. I apologize. So the chain starts with her asking how are the hearings going. I hadn’t been watching. The reason I hadn’t been watching is because I had been involved in a whole other set of conversations around what I saw was people not being good interagency partners. So my answer was the first holding answer, it’s just starting. I had to have a come-to with some of our colleagues with folks now on board was referencing why I didn’t know. Philippe’s up there. That’s basically telling her, if you want to know what’s really happening in the hearings, he’s present so you can ask him. But I haven’t been paying attention because I’ve been involved in this other conversation.
Mr. Jordan. So based on what you just described there –and then I’ll stop — based on what you described there, the “Philippe is up there with them,” “them” is not referring back to colleagues? “Them” is someone else? Ms. Mills. So “them” is up there for whoever the hearings are going on with. My conversations were happening with some of the interagency team that were not testifying, correct.
Mr. Jordan. All right. Thank you.
Mr. Westmoreland. I’ve just got some quick yes or noes. Going back to what the chairman asked about Ray Maxwell. Were you ever at that room downstairs when they were going through the emails with Jake Sullivan on a Sunday? 283
Ms. Mills. Well, I don’t know. That is quite possible I would have been there on a Sunday with Jake Sullivan. But I don’t recall that, because I actually don’t recall Jake Sullivan being down there much, if at all.
Mr. Westmoreland. But you could’ve been in that room with Jake Sullivan?
Ms. Mills. I could have been, I just think it’s pretty unlikely because I don’t recall him being downstairs.
Mr. Westmoreland. The other thing is, did the lady_, and I think you referred to her as a white lady —
Ms. Mills. Well, as opposed to an African American man. So for the purposes not of race but of being able to say I could tell the difference between the two.
Mr. Westmoreland. I got you. But the white lady, was she technically working for Mr. Maxwell?
Ms. Mills. No.
Mr. Westmoreland. So that’s not a true fact either?
Ms. Mills. I didn’t know there was a fact in there that said she was working for him.
Mr. Westmoreland. Yes. It says, “Technically the office director worked for Mr. Maxwell. “
Ms. Mills. And who was the office director? Does it say?
Mr. Westmoreland. The office director who is supposedly the lady that you were talking about —
Ms. Mills. I don’t know that it — I didn’t know that there was 284 an office director that — I don’t know that the person who was from NEA was the office director, so I don’t know if those two sync up in the same way. But I also haven’t read his article.
Mr. Davis. The post from NEA that you’re talking about, is that ?
Ms. Mills. Yes. Yes. Is she the office director?
Mr. Davis. Go ahead.
Mr. Westmoreland. I’m just assuming she was the lady that was -Ms. Mills. So I was just talking about the woman whose name you just said. 11111111
Mr. Davis. Part of your group. Ms. Mills. Yes. 11111111
Mr. Westmoreland. Who was the lady downstairs going through the emails?
Ms. Mills. 11111111 So I know her name, yes. I don’t know her position.
Mr. Westmoreland. Okay. But you don’t know who she worked for or whose supervision she works under?
Ms. Mills. It was my impression she worked for Liz Dibble and so that was the Deputy Assistant Secretary, at least
Mr. Westmoreland. Okay. Well, Mr. Maxwell just said she technically worked under him and that he didn’t know that she had been given an assignment to be in that room going through the emails.
Ms. Mills. Okay.
Mr. Westmoreland. But and then the personal conversations he 285 supposedly had with this lady, you wouldn’t have any knowledge if he had those conversations or not, right?
Ms. Mills. I wouldn’t know about conversations I didn’t participate in.
Mr. Westmoreland. Sure. Thank you.
Ms. Mills. But I would know about whether or not I had conversations with Ray Maxwell, and I didn’t.
Mr. Westmoreland. No. I understand.
Mrs. Brooks. As a follow-up to what Congressman Cummings asked you with respect to the conversations that the Secretary had with the victim’s families, I want to go to what if any conversations did she have with survivors?
Ms. Mills. So she met with the survivors when they came back. And at the time, what I can tell you is when we were doing outreach, because there was a real sensitivity to the survivors’ physical health, how we step through that. She had, by the time all of them were back, had had conversations with all of them. But I can’t tell you in what cohorts they were because they all had different states of injuries.
Mrs. Brooks. Okay. I’d like for you to take a look at an email that’s dated October 30, if you could –regarding one of the victims in particular and see if this refreshes your memory about her interaction with the victims. And when did you — and did you have any conversations with any of the survivors?
Mr. Wilkinson. So this would be number 12?
Ms. Jackson. Twelve. 286 [Mills Exhibit No. 12 Was marked for identification.]
Mrs. Brooks. And so marking emails as exhibit number 12 from October 30. And it starts on October 25, regarding a
Ms. Mills. 111111111111, uh-huh.
Mrs. Brooks. – Did you have any conversations with- -?
Ms. Mills. I don’t recall having conversations with other than when they came to the Department, which would have been near her departure time. I just remember there was a gentleman whose leg had been deeply injured, and if- is the gentleman whose leg had been injured, I remember him being in a wheelchair and meeting him at that time. If that’s not the right person, then I’ve misaligned injuries with the different individuals.
Mrs. Brooks. So did you or the Secretary have any interaction with the survivors prior to her leaving in February of 2013?
Ms. Mills. Yes, she had. And because some of the survivors had come back and so they had been back and they were ones who had not been injured. So they were part of the diplomatic team and she met with some of them. And then what she was conscious about was whenever people were ready to be able to take a call she wanted to do that call, but she didn’t want that to be at the expense of their health.
Mrs. Brooks. Okay. And do you know if this call ever happened? Do you know if it ever —
Ms. Mills. I don’t know. 287
Mrs. Brooks. There were a lot of people copied, it seems, on executing a call.
Ms. Mills. I know right. It’s nice to be the secretary. You get a lot of support.
Mrs. Brooks. Yes.
Ms. Mills. But I don’t know the answer to your question.
Mrs. Brooks. Okay. And then just finally, I know that at the very beginning – – and we’ve asked you a lot of questions today and obviously you have had to answer. You don ’t recall, “to the best of my recollection, ·· and so forth. You’ve been a lawyer for how long?
Ms. Mills. I graduated from law school sadly now in 1990.
Mrs. Brooks. Did you ever testify when you were chief of staff before any congressional committees?
Ms. Mills. At the Stat e Department?
Mrs. Brooks. Uh-huh.
Ms. Mills. I don’t believe I had occasion to do that. It’s nothing that I remember. I think it would have stood out.
Mrs. Brooks. And I think you said that this was probably the first crisis like this that you had dealt with; is that right?
Ms. Mills. No.
Mrs. Brooks. Oh, it’s not? Ms. Mill s. No.
Mrs. Brooks. Had there been other attacks where — Ms. Mills. Oh, now I understand what you’re saying. We’ve had crises. 288
Mrs. Brooks. Sure.
Ms. Mills. So I had — yeah. So Wikileaks, and the Haiti earthquake and the Japan tsunami. I had a lot of crises. But there was not an instance where we had lost an ambassador ever, no.
Mrs. Brooks. A crisis of this magnitude where someone had been lost.
Ms. Mills. Yes.
Mrs. Brooks. And you’ve talked repeatedly today about the importance of clarity and visibility and the importance of your staff and the people of the State Department providing answers and so forth. I’m curious, and you said early on that you never wrote your recollection or report on this. Why not?
Ms. Mills. Primarily because I was overwhelmed. In fact, you know, as somebody who would love to be in a place where history could capture those things, it would be a nice thing to have. But I was basically spending every moment of every day in motion, and so that wasn’t one of the opportunities I had.
Mrs. Brooks. And when did you leave the Department?
Ms. Mills. I left as chief of staff in February of 2013.
Mrs. Brooks. And where did you go?
Ms. Mills. I began doing consulting work and providing advice to a set of clients and basically doing economic development in Africa.
Mrs. Brooks. Okay. Did you contemplate doing a report then to help you later on?
Ms. Mills. I didn’t contemplate doing a report at that time, no. 289 I have never contemplated doing a writing or a report.
Mrs. Brooks. To help your memory of the — of your involvement in all of this?
Ms. Mills. I didn’t.
Mrs. Brooks. And everyone else’s involvement?
Ms. Mills. I didn’t, no.
Mrs. Brooks. Have you advised clients to ever not write reports?
Ms. Mills. No. I think I look – – you know, I experience this as a very human tragedy. And so, I’m not a book writer. I am not somebody who tries to make the case for history. I tend to be someone who’s a little bit more behind the scenes, both to my detriment or my strength, whatever that might be. But I wasn’t trying to capture something for posterity. I was trying to do the best I could.
Mrs. Brooks. Okay. Thank you.
Ms. Jackson. Let’s go off the record for just a brief moment. [Recess.] BY MS. SAWYER:
Q: Ms. Mills, just some quick follow-up. You were asked a series of questions about Secretary Clinton’s use of her personal email account during her time as Secretary. You know, in the interim progress report that the chairman put out in May of 2015 of this year, he said with regard to the personal email, quote, “Ultimately this committee’s interest is in ensuring all relevant and material information related to Libya and Benghazi that 290 was in the personal custody of the former Secretary of State has been returned to the public domain.” So I want to make sure we’ve asked you that quest ion clearly, and we’ve gotten an answer to that question, given it is our ultimate interest. Is it your understanding that all relevant and material information related to Libya and Benghazi has now been provided — that was in the personal custody of the Secretary of State has now been provided to the State Department?
Q: And you explained to us that there was a review process. You oversaw that review process. Had this inquiry come in at the time that you were all still at the State Department, would you have potentially been involved in the overseeing of getting it done then?
A: I don’t know that I would have then because I would have obviously had a whole set of other responsibilities I was doing, so I don’t know the answer to that question.
Q: Had you been involved, would you have done the same process that you did when the request came in as her former chief of staff after you had left?
Q: And you felt it was as robust as it would’ve been had you still been at the State Department?
Q: I’m putting myself in the mind of the critics here, and I can hear what they will say, which is, nonetheless, you had the 291 opportunity or the review process had the opportunity to make the decision as to what it was going to deem was purely personal in a hybrid category of personal and work and clearly work. At the outset of you discussing Federal records, you were explaining that there was an obligation of every employee — the obligation falls to every employee to review their records and decide what is a Federal record. So this notion of review and making these determinations do usually fall to the employees who must determine what a Federal record is. Is that the case?
A: That’s correct. Each individual has the obligation to conduct the review and provide those materials to the department, and that’s part of the regulations that each individual has that obligation.
Q: And so I just want to give you an opportunity, to the extent you want it, to the extent that that question is going to be raised about, yes, that you had the opportunity then to do the review yourselves. I’ve sometimes heard with regard to the ARB the notion, it’s like letting someone grade their own paper. We may hear that same notion with regard to the review of emails to determine what qualified as a Federal record. So I’d just like to give you the opportunity to kind of explain why you have assured us now that everything is back in — that was in the personal custody has been provided to the State Department.
A: So as I just said, each individual does have that responsibility. And I think in this instance, actually, she didn’t 292 undertake that review herself. She actually had other people undertake that review on her behalf, and so it was one more step removed than might be what the regulations are expecting, which is each individual doing it themselves, where you might have a little bit more subjectivity. But this process was designed to find anything that could potentially be work related, and she was clear about wanting to provide that to the Department. And so that’s what we undertook.
Q: And the letter that I saw that went out to you as her representative, I think as well as the letter that went out to you about your records indicated that the records they sought were records that might not already have been captured on the State. Gov system. I think you’ve explained to us the notion that that was the belief, that these Federal records already had been captured, would be captured. Nonetheless, did you turn over even documents that you believed would have already been captured?
A: Yes. About more than 90 percent of the records that were in her email were records that were to or from State.Gov accounts — were either to State.Gov accounts or from State.Gov accounts. And so improperly one would have assumed that those were already in the Department’s possession.
Q: And they may well have been, some of them, at l east. Not all of them, but some body of those.
A: Sure. I think it’s just about how adequate the Department’s recordkeeping systems are for keeping the electronic 293 records.
Q: So even in that regard, you erred on the side of being overinclusive rather than under inclusive?
Q: So would you say that that was true in every regard with when you did the review, that if there was any doubt, it was resolved in favor of producing and returning the document to the State Department, not withholding it?
A: Yes, that was her direction and so that was the approach that we took. Obviously, the Department only wanted Federal records. We did an imperfect job because there was more than 1, 200 of them that are personal, but her direction had been she wanted there to be as overinclusive approach as should be.
Q: Okay. I’m going to show you, as quickly as I can, what I’m going to mark as Exhibit 13. [Mills Exhibit No. 13 Was marked for identification.] BY MS. SAWYER:
Q: Because this came up in the last hour and I just want to ask you a couple of — last few hours. This is an excerpt from Colin Powell’s book “In Life and Leadership: It Worked for Me.” When it came up, I looked at it to see if I actually had the date. I had tried to copy the cover page, and I unfortunately did not. But my recollection, and I have to admit that I don’t know for certainty, but I do believe it was either in 2012 294 or in 2014 that this came out. And you had indicated that –and I’m going to just direct your attention, there’s an excerpt on page 109, which I did copy. Because he there explains, and he may explain it elsewhere, but this is where I had seen the explanation and there’s a paragraph on 109, it’s about the third paragraph down. “To complement the official State Department computer in my office, I installed a laptop computer on a private line. My personal email account on the laptop allowed me direct access to anyone online. I started shooting emails to my principal assistants, to individual ambassadors, and increasingly to my foreign minister colleagues, who like me, were trying to bring their ministries into the 186,000 miles-per-second world,” end quote. That’s where I had seen them referenced. You had been talking about knowing that — some other officials including Colin Powell. And the timing of that I just wanted to make clear, particularly because I know that you have done your best under difficult circumstances to recall as much as you can, do you think it was this excerpt that was your first knowledge, or do you think it was —
A: I don’t know if this was my first knowledge, but I was aware of this, obviously, because we were reading and preparing for when the Secretary transitioned to the Department. I can’t tell you it’s my first, but I can tell you I was aware from having read this as well, but I might have also learned it another way.
Q: But this may have postdated her transition into the 295 Department?
A: It could have, yes.
A: It could have been before. It could have been after. I mean, I do know that I had that awareness, and my awareness was one that when she was undertaking that, she was using hers that I had an awareness that the Department had had a previous instance, if not more than one, of secretaries who used their own personal mail.
Q: And he described some of the folks that he would have been emailing to, obviously principal assistants, individual ambassadors, all of whom are his colleagues at State, so that’s certainly one way in which it would’ve been well known.
A: Oh, yes, I do believe it was known in the Department that he had used his personal email, that’s correct.
Q: And those emails, as with Secretary Clinton, would have presumably been captured in a State system to the extent he was emailing with someone, anyone, in the chain who had a State.Gov account?
A: That’s what I would have assumed.
Q: He also says he was emailing increasingly with foreign minister colleagues. Some of those emails potentially wouldn’t have been captured in the official State.Gov system, is that accurate?
A: They wouldn’t have been captured in the State.Gov system.
Q: And then just to be completely clear, both at the time that this excerpt, you know, Secretary Powell predated Secretary Clinton, so both at the time he set up and installed a laptop computer on a private 296 line and used a personal account and during Secretary Clinton’s tenure, the use of a personal email account was not in any way prohibited, was it?
A: That’s correct. It was not prohibited.
Q: And there was a concern, and certainly it’s become a concern that’s been focused on now about whether Federal records — I mean there’s always been a Federal record requirement. The ranking member, actually, was the author of amendments to the Presidential Federal Records Act that took into account this concern, not related to Secretary Clinton but because it’s not a one-off. It’s not an uncommon situation. So the amendment there was to require either — to require assurance that it would be captured in the State system either contemporaneously by copying or within 20 days.
A: I see.
Q: So even that amendment does not prohibit outright, it assures the copying. So this concern about copying, I think, is a valid one. And you had said at one point kind of had you — you wished you had thought about it a little bit more earlier. And is that because the concern that things that you thought were potentially being captured ended up not being?
Q: And did you have any sense during the entire time that you worked with Secretary Clinton when you were chief of staff that she 297 had been using a personal email account in any way to evade Federal records requirements?
Q: In any way to conceal her conduct as the Secretary of State?
A: No. She emailed people on their State accounts, so she was very — those would be captured, or at least that Is what everyone would have assumed. So she emailed people and did her work-related engagement with people on their State accounts.
Q: One quick question on the ARB and then I just have some broad allegations that I want and need to ask you and then we will be finished for the day. You were asked about whether the ARB and why the ARB may not have interviewed Secretary Clinton. The co-chairmen of the ARB have testified and have been asked that question, and they have indicated to Congress both that they had unfettered access and that, as I understand it, had they believed that they had a need and there was evidence that the Secretary had been involved they would have interviewed her. Did they ever indicate — is that a potential reason why they would not have – – why they and, I think, the — I don It want to misquote the number, but a number of ARBs prior to the Benghazi ARB had not interviewed the Secretary of State who was in office at the time when they were doing an investigation after a significant incident at one of our overseas posts?
A: Yes. I think that ARBs were looking for the actual incident 298 and who can give firsthand information with respect to those incidents. Typically, the Secretary has not been involved in any of these incidents. Was it to be a security- related incident when the Secretary is traveling and something happened, it might be in those instances where they would then obviously be a direct participant or eyewitness as the chairman pointed out. But otherwise, their objective is to try to get as close to the ground as they can.
Q: And very quickly, I want to just make sure I’ve asked the question about the requests that have been made to you about your own documents. The same question about the interest of this committee and congressional committees doing oversight with regard to the requests t hat have been made by you, both I believe a more comprehensive request from the State Department to cover your entire tenure and then a specific request about Benghazi or Libya related. You know, have you at this point been able to return any documents that were in your personal custody to the State Department?
A: I have provided those materials to the State Department.
Q: Okay. And then I’m going to ask you a series of allegations. These are public allegations that have been made in the 3 years since the attacks. Many of them have been asked, and from our perspective many of them have been answered, nonetheless they persist. It’s our understanding that they are being pursued still, even by this committee, and I will ask you them. What I’m looking for here is just firsthand evidence or knowledge. 299 Some of these questions will fall within an arena where you potentially would have firsthand knowledge; some of them will not. I’m just going to ask you all of them, and we can discuss any of them that your response is that, yes, you do have firsthand knowledge; and if you do not, we’ll just move along to the next.
Q: Do you have any evidence that Secretary of State Clinton ordered Secretary of Defense Panetta to stand down on the night of the attacks?
Q: Do you have any evidence that Secretary of State Clinton issued any kind of order to Secretary of Defense Panetta on the night of the attacks?
Q: Do you have any evidence that Secretary Clinton personally signed an April 2012 cable denying security resources to Libya?
Q: Do you have any evidence that Secretary Clinton was personally involved in providing specific instruction on day-to-day security resources in Benghazi?
Q: Do you have any evidence that Secretary Clinton misrepresented or fabricated intelligence on the risks posed by Qadhafi to his own people in order to garner support from military operations in Libya in the spring of 2011? 300
Q: A bipartisan report issued by the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence found that the CIA was not collecting and shipping arms from Libya to Syria and that they found no support for this allegation. Do you have any evidence to contradict the House Intelligence Committee’s bipartisan report finding that the CIA was not shipping arms from Libya to Syria?
A: I do not have any such information.
Q: Do you have any evidence that the U.S. facilities in Benghazi were being used to facilitate weapons transfers from Libya to Syria or to any other foreign country?
A: I do not.
Q: A team of CIA security personnel was temporarily delayed from departing the Annex to assist the Special Mission Compound, and there have been a number of allegations about the cause of and the appropriateness of that delay. The House Intelligence Committee issued a bipartisan report concluding that the team was not ordered to stand down but that instead there were tactical disagreements on the ground over how quickly to depart. Do you have any evidence that would contradict the House Intelligence Committee’s finding that there was no stand down ordered to CIA personnel?
A: I don’t.
Q: Putting aside whether you personally agree with the 301 decision to delay temporarily or think it was the right decision, do you have any evidence that there was a bad or improper reason behind the temporary delay of the CIA’s security personnel who departed the Annex to assist the Special Mission Compound?
A: I do not.
Q: A concern has been raised by one individual that in the course of producing documents to the Accountability Review Board damaging documents may have been removed or scrubbed out of that production. Do you have any evidence that anyone at the State Department removed or scrubbed damaging documents from the materials that were provided to the ARB?
A: I don’t.
Q: Do you have any evidence that anyone at the State Department directed anyone else at the State Department to remove or scrub damaging documents from the materials that were provided to the ARB?
A: I don’t.
Q: Let me ask you this question for documents provided to Congress: Do you have any evidence that anyone at the State Department removed or scrubbed damaging documents from the materials that were provided to Congress?
A: I do not.
Q: It has been alleged that CIA Deputy Director Michael Morell altered unclassified talking points about the Benghazi attacks for political reasons and that he then misrepresented his actions when he told Congress that the CIA “faithfully performed our duties in accordance with the highest standards of objectivity and nonpartisanship.” 302 Do you have any evidence that CIA Deputy Director Mike Morell gave false or intentionally misleading testimony to Congress about the Benghazi talking points?
A: I don’t.
Q: Do you have any evidence that CIA Deputy Director Morell altered the talking points provided to Congress for political reasons?
A: I don’t.
Q: Do you have any evidence that Ambassador Rice intentionally misrepresented facts about the Benghazi attacks on the Sunday talk shows?
A: I don’t.
Q: It has been alleged that the President of the United States was virtually AWOL as Commander in Chief on the night of the attacks and that he was missing in action. Do you have any evidence to support the allegation that the President was virtually AWOL as Commander in Chief or missing in action on the night of the attacks?
A: I do not.
Q: It has been alleged that a team of four military personnel at Embassy Tripoli on the night of the attacks who were considering flying on the second plane to Benghazi were ordered by their superiors to stand down, meaning to cease all operations. Military officials have stated that those four individuals were instead ordered to remain 303 in place in Tripoli to provide security and medical assistance in their current location.
A: Republican staff report issued by the House Armed Services Committee found that there was no stand-down order issued to U.S. military personnel in Tripoli who sought to join the fight in Benghazi. Do you have any evidence to contradict the conclusion of the House Armed Services Committee that there was no stand down order issued to U.S. military personnel in Tripoli?
A: I don’t.
Q: It has been alleged that the military failed to deploy assets on the night of the attack that would have saved lives. Former Republican Congressman Howard Buck McKeon, the former chair of the House Armed Services Committee, conducted a review of the attacks after which he stated, “Given where the troops were, how quickly the thing all happened and how quickly it dissipated, we probably couldn’t have done more than we did.” Do you have any evidence to contradict Congressman McKeon’s conclusion?
A: I could not.
Q: Do you have any evidence that the Pentagon had military assets available to them on the night of the attacks that could’ve saved lives if the Pentagon leadership intentionally decided not to deploy?
Ms. Sawyer. Ms. Mills, that concludes our questions. We truly appreciate your indulgence starting so early and really working with 304 the committee through all of our questions. I don’t know if the ranking member —
Mr. Cummings. No. I just want to say thank you also. And out of respect for your time 1 I’m not going to ask any questions. I have a lot, but it’s fine. And I just want to thank you for your service.
Ms. Mills. Thank you. Thank you for taking the time to be here today. I know all of you all have other places to be and other things you could be doing1 so I appreciate not only you being here but all of you being here and the respect that you’ve showed me through this process. I really appreciate it.
Mr. Gowdy. Thank you. [Whereupon, at 5:32 p.m. 1 the interview was concluded.]