Columns

Cornyn: IG Report Shows Need for Special Counsel to Probe Hillary's Server

WASHINGTON — The Senate majority whip today reiterated his call for a special counsel to investigate Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server in the wake of the State Department inspector general’s report that sharply criticized the practices of the former secretary of State.

The IG found that Clinton, who refused to be interviewed for the investigation, used the home-based server throughout her term as senator and in her 2008 presidential campaign, and kept on using it once at the State Department.

“Sending emails from a personal account to other employees at their Department accounts is not an appropriate method of preserving any such emails that would constitute a Federal record. Therefore, Secretary Clinton should have preserved any Federal records she created and received on her personal account by printing and filing those records with the related files in the Office of the Secretary,” the report states.

“At a minimum, Secretary Clinton should have surrendered all emails dealing with Department business before leaving government service and, because she did not do so, she did not comply with the Department’s policies that were implemented in accordance with the Federal Records Act.”

On the Senate floor today, Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) said the report confirmed “what many people suspected all along.”

“People wonder why people are so upset with Washington and what they see as a culture of corruption that doesn’t address some of these fundamental issues. Time and time again we’ve heard Secretary Clinton and her allies say that her use of a private e-mail server was wholly consistent with State Department policy,” Cornyn said. “But, of course, the report that was just released by the Inspector General yesterday says otherwise and reveals a host of other inconsistencies.”

“The conduct of the former Secretary demonstrates why people just don’t trust her. And, of course, the recent contradictions are just outrageous and indicate that rather than cooperation, her intention has been to obstruct the public’s right to know.”

Cornyn said the IG review “underscores why I believe we need an independent investigation into this matter.”

He’s asked Attorney General Loretta Lynch to appoint a special counsel “to provide some modest level of independence so the public can know that we’ve gotten to the bottom of this, despite Secretary Clinton’s denials and obfuscation and statement of untruth, and finally get to the bottom of it.”

Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus on Wednesday called the report “just the latest chapter in the long saga of Hillary Clinton’s bad judgment that broke federal rules and endangered our national security.”

Priebus also charged that “her motivation was secrecy, not convenience.”

Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Ranking Member Tom Carper (D-Del.), though, said the report shows Clinton “was just one of many former secretaries and other State Department employees who used a personal email account, and partisan attempts to single her or her practices out now that she is running for president are unfair and not productive.”

“Moving forward, it is critical that we continue to implement the 2014 reforms to the Federal Records Act and improve record keeping practices throughout the federal government in order to tackle these longstanding weaknesses,” Carper said.