Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonDemocrats worry negative images are defining White House Heller won't say if Biden won election Whitmer trailing GOP challenger by 6 points in Michigan governor race: poll MORE on Tuesday called on the State Department to expedite the review process for her emails, saying she wants them released to the public as soon as possible.
“I want those emails out. ... Anything they might do to expedite that process, I wholeheartedly support. I want the American people to learn as much as we can about the work that I did,” she said after an event at a bicycle shop in Cedar Falls, Iowa.
The candidate's remarks came just a few hours after a federal judge rejected the State Department's request to have until January to release the emails, which Clinton sent from a personal account that she used exclusively in her role as the nation's top diplomat.
Clinton provided more than 55,000 pages of emails to the State Department earlier this year after deleting all communications that she deemed to be personal in nature.
The judge hasn’t released a timeline for releasing Clinton's emails, but the court fight — and the House Republican probe of the terrorist attacks in Benghazi, Libya — are threatening to spill over in 2016, when the first Democratic primaries will be held.
State had initially requested a Jan. 15 release date for Clinton's redacted communications, which would be just weeks before the Iowa caucus and the New Hampshire primary.
Clinton has defended her use of the email account, and on Tuesday suggested the documents will cast a favorable light on her tenure in President Obama's Cabinet.
"I think it will show how hard we worked and what we did for our country during the time that I was secretary of State, where I worked extremely hard on behalf of our values,” she said.
Clinton's remarks about the email controversy came as she took questions from reporters for the first time in more than three weeks.
Her avoidance of reporters had been drawing the ire of the press. The New York Times published questions it would have asked Clinton on immigration after a roundtable earlier this month, while The Washington Post created a clock that counted how long it had been since she answered questions from the media. That clock had reached almost 28 days as of Tuesday morning.
The candidate’s unexpected decision to take questions came after Fox News’s Ed Henry interrupted her morning event to ask her if she’d speak to the press.
“Maybe when I finish talking to the people here, how’s that?” she told him. “I might, I’ll have to ponder it, but I’ll put it on my list for due consideration.”
During the informal Q&A with reporters, Clinton briefly talked about some of the other topics that have been linked to her in recent headlines, including her personal wealth, her family foundation, and a former aide that will likely be subpoenaed to talk about his advice before the 2012 attacks in Benghazi.
She brushed aside criticism that her wealth, which has grown by more than $30 million since she left State mainly from speaking fees and book sales, makes her out of touch.
“Obviously, Bill and I have been blessed and we're very grateful for the opportunities that we've had, but we've never forgotten where we came from,” she said, according to a transcript in the Des Moines Register.
“Most Americans understand that the deck is stacked for those at the top, and I am running a campaign that is very clearly stating we want to reshuffle that deck.”
Prospective GOP candidates and Clinton rivals have also needled her for not taking questions from the press. Former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) all brought up the topic during remarks at the Iowa Republican Party’s Lincoln Dinner in Des Moines.
Fiorina’s staff has regularly pointed out that she has answered hundreds more questions than Clinton has during her brief time on the trail.
“Unlike Hillary Clinton, I am not afraid to answer questions about my track record or beliefs,” Fiorina said earlier this month in South Carolina.
Clinton’s allies say she’s prioritizing her interactions with voters rather than avoiding the media. Correct the Record, a rapid response group that supports Clinton, sent out a statement to reporters on Monday that noted she has answered 20 questions from Americans on the trail and asked them more than 100.
Besides the brief interaction with the press, Clinton continued to embrace policies from the progressive wing of the party as she panned efforts by some Republican lawmakers to chip away at the Dodd-Frank Wall Street reform law.
“The Republicans insist on using this issue to give relief to community banks as a Trojan horse for rolling back protections from consumers and rolling back the rules on the biggest banks, as we're seeing right now in legislation that Republicans are introducing,” she said.
“We should call this what it is: a cynical attempt to game the system for those at the top."
But she dodged the main policy question that’s been dogging her for weeks — her stance on the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a controversial Asia-Pacific trade deal that’s pitted President Obama and Republicans against a group of Democrats that worry that the plan is a raw deal for American workers.
Clinton supported the deal as recently as in her 2014 book, Hard Choices, where she praised TPP as a tool for “engaging with Vietnam,” and 2012, when she lauded the deal while serving at State.
But as Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Clinton's rival for the presidential nomination Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) continue to pan the deal from the progressive wing of the party, Clinton still has not come down on either side of the issue and says she wants to wait to judge the final agreement once the language is finalized.
This story was updated at 3:37 p.m.