The State Department says it needs so much time to review the 50,000 pages of emails handed over by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that it can’t release them until January 2016.
In response to Freedom of Information Act Lawsuit filed by Vice News, the State Department on Monday argued to a U.S. District Court that the process of reviewing the emails is simply too arduous and time-consuming, and asked the court to adopt a proposed completion date of January 15, 2016 — just two weeks before the primary season for the 2016 presidential race gets into full swing.
When it was revealed Clinton had been using her own private email server to conduct government business during her tenure as Secretary of State, she took to social media to tell the public she wanted everyone to see her emails. Now the 2016 front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination, Clinton said she’d asked the State Department to review them and make them public as soon as possible.
John F. Hackett, acting director of the Office of Information Programs and Services at the State Department, says in the court filing that he understands the considerable public interest in the emails and the desire to get them out quickly.
“The collection is, however, voluminous and, due to the breadth of topics, the nature of the communications, and the interests of several agencies, presents several challenges,” Hackett wrote.
Separately, State Department officials told ABC News that 300 previously undisclosed emails from then Clinton relating to the 2012 Benghazi terror attack could be made public as soon as this week.
SOURCE: JUSTIN FISHEL and MIKE LEVINE