According to Republicans, the U.S. attorney general should immediately name a special prosecutor to shed light on the way Hillary Clinton managed her emails while she was secretary of state.
The idea, pushed forward this week by an influential Republican senator, is reminiscent of the time when her husband was caught in an embarrassing snafu with Monica Lewinsky — and nearly became destitute.
The Democratic front-runner’s competition for the next presidential election would like to make history repeat itself under a different guise and thus torpedo her chances, but the underlying facts do not seem to favor this kind of scenario.
These partisan excesses don’t mean there’s nothing disconcerting about the accusations against her.
Last March’s revelation that she had used a private rather than an official email address throughout her mandate — and that she had even set up a server to do so — raises legitimate questions that need to be answered.
Did the former secretary of state want to find a way around access to information laws, which would force her to keep all written documents related to her position?
Did she take an unnecessary risk by using a poorly secured server that could have allowed computer hackers to access designated information?
She maintained that she simply wanted to limit the number of electronic devices she needed to manage her communications. According to her, everything was perfectly legal and safe, and the sensitive information was handled properly.
After a court order, her entourage handed over copies of tens of thousands of emails to the government. Over 30,000 were destroyed because they supposedly were unrelated to her duties.
In July, after analyzing a sample of Clinton’s communications, the intelligence community’s inspector general stated that he had identified a handful of emails that should have been classified.
The FBI is on the case, but the attorney general stated that the current investigation is not criminal in nature, and is not specifically an investigation of Clinton.
Though she’s not the type to torpedo her own campaign, the issue has had a negative impact on the former first lady, who refused to apologize for months.
A few days ago, she finally admitted that she should not have proceeded that way, but the mea culpa came grudgingly. And it left several important questions unanswered.
Unless she truly puts her cards down on the table, which means, among other things, explaining why she thought it was necessary to use her own server, Hillary Clinton will continue to draw criticism.
Recent polls, which revealed that her popularity is waning, should convince her of the virtues of greater transparency.
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