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Gov. Palin: I faced tough questions over email, so should Hillary Clinton

AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, Pool/File

The latest Obama administration scandal involving Hillary Clinton’s emails has many Americans discussing private email accounts used by government officials, and clarification is in order.

It’s appropriate and proper for a politician to use private email for personal and campaign business. This is what I did as governor of Alaska in order to be in compliance with the law, which requires that personal or campaign business not be conducted using public resources such as a government email account. There is a firm line separating the two.

However, that’s not what we see with this Clinton email scandal. As Secretary of State under Obama, Hillary Clinton used private email accounts on a privately maintained server 100 percent of the time for 100 percent government business. That’s unethical, no doubt illegal, and flies in the face of all claims of transparency. Hillary Clinton and her staff weren’t trying to be in compliance with the law; they were skirting it altogether.

Consider, for example, how Secretary Clinton’s private email server makes a mockery of transparency when it comes to Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests.

First, some background: I know something about how annoying FOIA requests can be for public officials. After I returned home from the 2008 vice presidential campaign, the state of Alaska was flooded with innumerable FOIA requests to see literally every single email I ever wrote while governor. It was an overwhelming request for a small population state with limited resources.  But our system of government relies on transparency, and that means public officials must suck it up and let the public see whatever they want.

When FOIA requests bombarded us, investigators and our attorney general’s office were given full access to all of my state and private emails. The only emails redacted were the very few that were protected by attorney/client privilege – a determination agreed upon by my lawyers and the Attorney General’s office who reviewed them. In other words, an independent third party reviewed every email. There was no chance for any “smoking gun” to escape detection because nothing was kept secret in any way. Everything was done in the most transparent way possible.  More

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