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Slick Hillie’s emails? Trust but verify.

Written By | Mar 29, 2015

WASHINGTON, March 29, 2015 — Recently it was revealed that Hillary Clinton did not use the secure government server when sending and receiving emails when serving in her position as secretary of state from 2009 to 2013. Since these emails contain potentially sensitive information, she was required to turn over all emails relating to State Department business. She said she did that and then deleted the personal emails that were on the server.

Is Clinton being completely truthful?

Read Also:  Deconstructing Hillary Clinton’s email excuses

Her decision to use not only a personal email account for government business, but also to use a personal server, is unprecedented. While past secretaries of state made have had personal email accounts, all had government secured accounts where government business was safely and securely conducted. Clinton said that she used a personal server because it was “convenient.”

According to information provided by Clinton, there were more than 66,000 emails either sent or received by her during her time as secretary of state. She said her attorneys reviewed all of them and determined about 36,000 were personal and private. The other 30,000 were made into hard copies and turned over to the State Department, although it seemed odd that hard copies, instead of easily searchable electronic copies, were provided.

A few weeks ago Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., chairperson of the House Select Committee on Benghazi, requested that Clinton give her server to an independent third party for review. Last Friday her attorney, David Kendall, answered that request by saying that there is no reason to provide the server since it had been wiped clean.

Read Also:  Hillary Clinton: Angry, defiant and unapologetic

There are different levels of deleting files and different levels of wiping clean, so it is difficult to determine what, if anything, may be retrievable. Kendall said this level of wiping clean permanently deleted all emails as well as the backup system, making retrieval impossible.

We do trust Clinton, but we would like to verify. This “trust but verify” philosophy has been used successfully in many negotiations. Both parties usually find that a willingness to allow accurate verification of actions usually means the parties have absolutely nothing to hide.

Conversely, when parties in a negotiation will not agree to accurate verification it usually means they have something to hide. Without seeing Clinton’s emails and just trusting that she gave all of them with verification, it does raise the question whether she is trying to hide something.

There are so many deceptions and outright false statements coming from this administration that the credibility of each official always seems to be in question. From the Fast and Furious cover-up to the Obamacare deceptions about keeping our doctor and our plan to the “video” that triggered the Benghazi attacks to the IRS and Veterans Hospital scandals to the Bergdahl deceptions and to a lack of accurate information about foreign policy, this administration has done too much secretly and deceptively.

For a president who promised transparency, he has been more opaque than any president ever. During Hillary Clinton’s time as secretary of state apparently the president allowed her to have a secret email account on an unsecured server that she controlled. The president had to have known since every email he received from her came from other than a .gov address.

Read Also:  Emails of the private elite: Hillary Clinton, Lois Lerner, Eric Holder

Clinton says she had turned over all 300 emails relating to the Benghazi attack. Since there are no more emails relating to Benghazi and since the server has been wiped clean anyway, she says there is no reason to turn it over. She says we should trust her, even though there is no way to verify.

Gowdy also said there may be another problem. It appears that the server was wiped clean after Oct. 28, 2014, when the State Department asked Clinton to turn over all her records. That could be an obstruction of justice.

Since Clinton is likely to be the Democratic Party’s nominee for [resident in 2016, the American people have a right to know about all communication that their secretary of state had regarding the welfare and security of the country. Hillary Clinton said to trust her when she says she gave all of them already.

We sure would like to be able to verify that, which shouldn’t be a problem if she has nothing to hide.

So we have to ask, is she hiding something?

Michael Busler

Michael Busler

Michael Busler, Ph.D. is a public policy analyst and a Professor of Finance at Stockton University where he teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in Finance and Economics. He has written Op-ed columns in major newspapers for more than 35 years.