It was lost amid news of President Obama's Iran deal, but this week Hillary Clinton released a 3,500-word explanation of her secret email system. While it is by far the most extensive statement the Clinton campaign has made on the issue, the explanation does not touch what has become a key question, if not the key question, of the email affair: Did Clinton withhold information from Congress?
The statement is in question-and-answer form. In it, Clinton asserts that she carefully followed every law and regulation that applied to her emails as secretary of state. She did absolutely nothing wrong, she says.
One of the questions asked is: "Did Clinton delete any emails while facing a subpoena?" Clinton's answer is no, she did not. According to the Clinton campaign: "The emails that Clinton chose not to keep were personal emails -- they were not federal records or even work-related -- and therefore were not subject to any preservation obligation under the Federal Records Act or any request. Nor would they have been subject to the subpoena -- which did not exist at the time -- that was issued by the Benghazi Select Committee some three months later."
The subpoena to which Clinton referred was issued March 4, 2015, after the committee learned that Clinton kept her emails on a separate, secret server. Clinton seems to be confirming that she destroyed her email records (and all backups, according to her attorney) in early December, which would be three months before the Benghazi committee subpoena. So Clinton's argument is: There's no way I was subject to a subpoena because I destroyed everything before the subpoena was issued.