Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton acknowledged Tuesday that she had erred in using only a private e-mail server for work correspondence at the State Department, saying that she sent about 60,000 e-mails from her private account during her four-year tenure as secretary of state.
Clinton, a prospective Democratic presidential candidate, told a news conference at the United Nations in New York that the “vast majority” of her emails went to State Department addresses, meaning they were preserved.
Clinton said “it would have been probably smarter” to use two e-mail accounts, a government one and a personal one, but that she opted to only use the personal one out of “convenience.”
“I thought it would be easier to carry just one device for my work and for my personal e-mails than two,” Clinton said. “I did it for convenience and I now looking back think that it might have been smarter to have those two devices from the very beginning.”
But Clinton said she deleted thousands of personal e-mails from her server — including correspondence about daughter Chelsea’s wedding, her mother Dorothy’s funeral and yoga routines — and that they were not provided to the State Department for review.
Clinton has come under fire for her use of a private email account for official business when she served as the top U.S. diplomat because of concerns about security and concerns that she shielded important facts about her tenure from the public.
Clinton’s remarks at a crowded news conference outside the U.N. Security Council chambers overshadowed her comments earlier in the day about gender equality. A throng of cameras and reporters, many waiting for hours to get their credentials, were there only to hear her comments about the e-mail controversy.
Clinton reportedly used a private e-mail server that was installed in her home and her own Internet domain — clintonemail.com — to conduct government business. Until now, her only comments came via Twitter on March 4.
She said the e-mail server was initially set up for use by former president Bill Clinton. Hillary Clinton insisted that there were “numerous safeguards” in place, adding there were “no security breaches.” Clinton said personal e-mails were discarded, adding the server would remain private.
Shortly before Clinton’s news conference, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki announced the agency will make 55,000 pages of Clinton’s e-mails available on a website after a review that could take months. “We will … release in one batch at the end of that review to ensure that standards are consistently applied,” Psaki said.
Separately, 300 pages of e-mails provided to the House Select Committee on Benghazi will also be reviewed and released before the entire set is available, Psaki said. The department has said repeatedly that Clinton’s use of a private e-mail account was not prohibited as long as she kept records.