Washington – As Republican lawmakers criticized Hillary Clinton Tuesday for using her personal email account to conduct government business at the State Department, the White House would not say whether the former Cabinet secretary violated federal law.

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest told reporters at his daily briefing that he could not say why Clinton did not use a government account, and referred reporters to the State Department.

Clinton, the likely frontrunner for the Democratic nomination for president, used a personal e-mail account to conduct government business during her four years at the State Department, which may have violated federal regulations, The New York Times reported Monday night.

Earnest said "very specific guidance has been given to agencies all across the government, which is specifically that employees in the Obama administration should use their official e-mail accounts when they’re conducting official government business."

Emails from official government accounts are saved for public record but, according to the Times story, Clinton did not preserve her personal emails as required by the Federal Records Act.

"Violations of the Federal Records Act within federal agencies is something we take very seriously," said House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah. Chaffetz said his committee will work with the Select Committee on Benghazi to further explore Clinton’s use of personal emails.

In December, Clinton turned over 55,000 pages of personal e-mails to the State Department after her aides reviewed them and selected which pages to hand over.

rest http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/29461-white-house-struggles-to-explain-clinton-email-flap

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