• COMMENTARY: Hillary Clinton’s Presidential Aspirations And The State Dept Coverup

    The former Secretary of State may be using State Department property to help in her inevitable campaign for president.

    Hillary Clinton is under fire, facing questions relating to her handling – or mishandling – of State Department e-mails, as well as $170 million in foreign donations to her Clinton Foundation, while she was Secretary of State. The media is focused on what she might be hiding, if anything, or whether the former First Lady broke laws relating to her use of a private server.

    The media isn’t talking about the most insidious possibility: that Mrs. Clinton plans to use government property on her private server to win the White House – and use the State Department to cover it up.

    Ignore for the moment that the former secretary used the first two minutes of a press conference designed to address the email scandal to distract viewers by self-aggrandizing with regard to her work on gender equality, and blast Senate Republicans over their letter to Iran as “out of step with the best traditions of American leadership.”

    In full presidential campaign mode, she rhetorically asked if Republicans were “trying to be helpful to the Iranians or harmful to the Commander in Chief.” Clinton was ironically silent when numerous members of Congress, including then-Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), met with Syrian president Bashar al-Assad in 2007 – undermining the approach of the Bush administration.

    Also ignore for the moment that Mrs. Clinton claimed she “opted for convenience” in using a single device for her personal and work emails, after admitted using both an iPhone and a Blackerry at the Lead On Watermark Silicon Valley Conference for Women just two weeks earlier.

    Ignore that she and her attorneys were the only arbiters determining which emails constituted “work-related” documents. She claims she provided 55,000 printed pages of emails, yet deleted some 30,000 so-called private emails. This creates more questions than answers.

    Why would she delete 30,000 emails instead of leaving them be? Did she believe that they could be subpoenaed in an official investigation? Is she concerned with their contents? Were any work-related emails overlooked, that may have been dumped in the virtual recycle bin? Were the emails in fact deleted, or are they still sitting on that server?

    In addition, the State Department is now saying they are “fairly certain” Hillary Clinton did not sign a mandatory separation agreement certifying that she surrendered all documents to the State Department when she left office.

    Was she exempted from this mandatory policy, or did someone at the State Department determine that a missing document is better for everyone involved than a document signed in opposition to the truth?

    Finally, ignore that a CBS News investigation has uncovered $170 million from foreign entities and individuals donated to the Clinton Foundation – including a $500,000 donation from Algeria, which was “spending heavily to lobby the State Department on human rights issues.”

    Of course many of the originating countries have deplorable records on women’s rights – an issue Clinton says is “the great unfinished business of the 21st century.”

    There’s no doubt that Secretary Clinton made many connections in her position, both foreign and domestic. If this correspondence had occurred via State Department emails, they would no longer be accessible to her after her departure in 2013. With the emails stored on a private server, exclusively under the control of Hillary and former president Bill Clinton, to whom the server reportedly belongs, there’s no telling how they could be used in her bid for the Oval.

    There’s also no way of knowing whether funds directed to the Clinton Foundation, from within the U.S. or from foreign entities, will eventually make their way into organizations used to help elect Hillary in 2016.

    The White House knew about Clinton’s private email use, and took no action.

    The State Department is still running in circles over the separation agreement.

    Meanwhile, Secretary Clinton thought that emailing State Department officials on their own “.gov” emails was sufficient for capture and storage purposes of her own emails, and she refuses to release her private server for independent analysis.

    Now this week, old “Slick Willy” pal James Carville was trotted out to make the political argument that “she didn’t want Louie Gohmert rifling through her emails,” a position he felt reasonable people would understand.

    At best, Secretary Clinton was unaware of her own department’s policies with regard to the use of personal email accounts. At worst, she could be using State Department property, paid for with tax payer dollars, to aid in her pursuit of the presidency.

    With President Obama’s fondness for potential Clinton challenger, and U.S. Senator from Massachusetts, Elizabeth Warren, perhaps it’s only a matter of time until the full truth comes out and Hillary Clinton spends 2016 watching the presidential election unfold with her private server – at her home in Chappaqua.

    Mark Ciavola

    Mark Ciavola is a Nevada-based political consultant.

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