According to lawyers representing the State Department in a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit, approximately 30 of the 15,000 emails the FBI recovered from Hillary Clinton’s private server contained messages relating to the 2012 Benghazi attack. The lawyers could not say whether any of those emails had already been released in the original 30,000 Hillary turned over to the State Department.
State Department spokesman John Kirby issued a statement that shed as little light as possible on the situation.
“Using broad search terms, we have identified approximately 30 documents potentially responsive to a Benghazi-related request,” he said. “At this time, we have not confirmed that the documents are, in fact, responsive, or whether they are duplicates of materials already provided to the Department by former Secretary Clinton in December 2014.”
The lawyers, speaking before U.S. District Court Judge Amit Mehta on Tuesday, said they would need at least a month to clear the emails for public release. Mehta was reportedly unhappy about this timeframe; he demanded that the lawyers return in a week to explain, in detail, why it would take them until the end of September to redact the necessary parts of only 30 emails.
Apparently, “we are part of the federal government” is not detailed enough to explain the delay.
Judicial Watch, the conservative group behind the lawsuit, wants to see the 30 emails – and any other relevant messages – released to the public before the election on November 8. State Department officials have insisted that it could take many months – or even years – to finish sorting through thousands of emails.
Jason Miller, senior communications director for the Trump campaign, said that the mere fact that the Benghazi emails exist is enough to cast doubt on Clinton’s previous statements.
“Clinton swore before a federal court and told the American people she handed over all of her work-related emails,” Miller said. “If Clinton did not consider emails about something as important as Benghazi to be work-related, one has to wonder what is contained in the other emails she attempted to wipe from her server.”
Yes, indeed. One does wonder.