September 4, 2015: Clinton says her decision to use a private server for all her emails “wasn’t the best choice” but “it was allowed and it was fully above board.”

Clinton grants an interview with Andrea Mitchell on NBC News, September 4, 2015. (Credit: NBC News)

Clinton grants an interview with Andrea Mitchell on NBC News, September 4, 2015. (Credit: NBC News)

She also says she “was not thinking a lot” when she began her term as secretary of state, because “there was so much work to be done.” When asked if that raises judgment questions, Clinton replies that she doesn’t think so. She adds that “The people in the government knew that I was using a personal account… the people I was emailing to on the dot gov system certainly knew and they would respond to me on my personal email.” (The Guardian, 9/9/2015) (NBC News, 9/4/2015) 

However, according to a May 2016 State Department inspector general’s report, many senior department officials knew of her personal email account but “were unaware of the scope or extent” of it, especially the fact that that was her only email account. Even fewer knew that the account was hosted on a personal server. (US Department of State, 5/25/2016)

September 4, 2015: Justice Department lawyers oppose a search for Clinton’s deleted emails.

Judicial Watch asks a federal judge to order the State Department to take steps to determine whether any of the 31,830 emails deleted by Clinton still exist. They argue that Clinton’s emails are essentially government property that she should not have been allowed to take when she left the State Department.

However, Justice Department lawyers acting on behalf of the State Department oppose the request. They argue that personal emails are not federal records and don’t need to be preserved. One such government lawyer asserts, “There is no question that former Secretary Clinton had authority to delete personal emails without agency supervision—she appropriately could have done so even if she were working on a government server.”

Others have noted that at least some of the deleted emails have been found and were work-related. (The Washington Post, 9/12/2015)