Benghazi panel releases Clinton subpoena

Benghazi panel releases Clinton subpoena

The Republican-controlled House Select Committee on Benghazi has released the subpoena it served former secretary of State Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonLawmakers targeted as district politics shift Want a tremendous deal on infrastructure spending? Suspend Davis-Bacon Constitutional amendment could vastly improve campaign finance MORE earlier this year.

“The committee has issued several subpoenas, but I have not sought to make them public,” panel chairman Trey GowdyTrey GowdyRussia investigation 'back on track' after Nunes recusal Five questions for the House's new Russia investigator Chaffetz decision stuns Washington MORE (R-S.C.) said Wednesday in a statement.

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“I would not make this one public now, but after Secretary Clinton falsely claimed the committee did not subpoena her, I have no choice in order to correct the inaccuracy,” he added.

The release of the subpoena comes one day after Clinton chided Republicans for making her use of a private email server a political issue, saying she "never had a subpoena."

Republicans pounced, arguing Clinton's claim was false.

“The committee immediately subpoenaed Clinton personally after learning the full extent of her unusual email arrangement with herself, and would have done so earlier if the State Department or Clinton had been forthcoming that State did not maintain custody of her records and only Secretary Clinton herself had her records when Congress first requested them," Gowdy said Wednesday.

Rep. Elijah Cummings (Md.), the Benghazi panel's top Democrat, said Republicans are twisting Clinton's words.

"Obviously everyone-including Secretary Clinton-knows Chairman Gowdy issued a subpoena back in March because he also issued a press release about it at the time," he said in a statement.

"It appears clear that Secretary Clinton was answering a question about whether she deleted emails 'while facing a subpoena.' She produced her work-related emails to the State Department in December, which was months before the Chairman's subpoena in March," he added.

Cummings said the release "supposedly revealing the existence of the subpoena is nothing but a stunt in this latest taxpayer-funded attack against Secretary Clinton."

The six-page subpoena, delivered to Clinton’s attorney on March 4, asks for all documents sent to and from the private email she used while in office between Jan. 1, 2011 and Dec. 31, 2012.

The subpoena lays out 19 “schedule instructions” as to how compliance should be handled, including how files should be indexed electronically.

Clinton defended her email use in an interview Tuesday with CNN, saying she used one device for sending messages, that all of her emails went into a government system, and that she turned over 55,000 pages of emails for release “because I wanted to go above and beyond what was expected of me.”

“I turned over everything I was obligated to turn over and then I moved on,” she added. “People delete their personal emails, their work emails, whatever emails they have on a regular basis. I turned over everything I could imagine.”

Gowdy issued a strongly worded statement hours later, saying Clinton had a “duty” to preserve her messages.

On Wednesday, Gowdy said “the timing of the Secretary's decision to delete and attempt to permanently destroy emails is curious at best.”

“The Secretary left office in February of 2013. By her own admission she did not delete or destroy emails until the fall of 2014, well after this Committee had been actively engaged in securing her emails from the Department of State,” he said.

“For 20 months, it was not too burdensome or cumbersome for the Secretary to house records on her personal server but mysteriously in the fall of 2014 she decided to delete and attempt to permanently destroy those same records,” he added. 

— This story was updated at 4:42 p.m.