Dem source: Bill Clinton paid out of pocket for personal email server

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A Democratic source familiar with the arrangement tells Fox News that former President Bill Clinton paid out of his own pocket for the email server that was used by then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and has become the center of the controversy over why she deleted over 30,000 emails.

This claim is significant because various Republicans, including Chairman Trey Gowdy of the House Select Committee on Benghazi, have been pressing for answers about whether taxpayers own the server and deserve access to it.

That question came up because of the way the former secretary worded her answer to a question at this week's news conference, as she insisted that the server would remain private.

"The system we used was set up for President Clinton's office," the former secretary said on Tuesday, specifically referring to the former president's office, which is funded in part by taxpayer dollars.

She added, "It had numerous safeguards. It was on property guarded by the Secret Service and there were no security breaches. So, I think that the use of that server, which started with my husband, certainly proved to be effective and secure."

The Democratic source familiar with the arrangements told Fox News the former secretary was referring to her husband's personal office, which is largely funded by his paid speeches and other work not connected to his taxpayer-funded office. The source noted this is specifically why the server is housed at their home in Chappaqua, N.Y., instead of his office in Harlem.

While aides to the former president have said that he does not use email, his aides do and wanted a secure system to communicate with one another about Bill Clinton's speeches and business dealings.

A Democratic source also confirmed a Wall Street Journal report that aides to Hillary Clinton approached aides to Bill Clinton before she became secretary of state in 2009 to see if they could share access to the server.

The Journal reported that aides to Bill Clinton expressed concerns that adding her would make it a bigger target for hackers. The Democratic source who spoke to Fox News downplayed those concerns, and said aides to Hillary Clinton believe it was secure.