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More than 1,200 Clinton emails deemed ‘personal’

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More than 1,200 emails turned over to the State Department from Hillary Clinton have been deemed “personal” and will not be made public.

The ruling from the government’s chief records official followed a request from the State Department to analyze approximately 30,000 emails from the former secretary of State’s private server.

The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) classified 1,246 of those emails as personal communications, CNN reported Thursday.

{mosads}“The goal of this review was to validate that the department correctly applied federal statues, regulations and guidelines in identifying the personal correspondence of the former secretary,” chief records officer Paul Wester wrote in a letter dated May 6.

Wester added that federal standards define personal messages as any communications that are “documentary materials belonging to an individual that are not used to conduct agency business.”

State Department spokesman Alec Gerlach said the designation would prevent such emails from entering the public record, according to CNN.

Controversy over Clinton’s communications has dogged her since the revelation she used a private email server while serving as secretary of State.

The State Department is reviewing those emails and initially said they would be released in 2016. But a federal judge earlier this week ordered the agency to begin releasing them on a rolling basis.

House Republicans investigating the 2012 Benghazi attacks have also pressed State to turn over all emails related to the incident.

Clinton weighed in on the controversy earlier this week, saying that she also wanted the emails released as soon as possible.

“I want those emails out. … Anything they might do to expedite that process, I wholeheartedly support,” she said during an event in Cedar Falls, Iowa.

“I want the American people to learn as much as they can about the work that I did,” she added.

Wester’s decision on Thursday also follows reports his agency worried Clinton’s State records would end up in President Bill Clinton’s library archives once she left the government.

“Tom heard (or thought he heard) from the Clinton Library Director that there are or may be plans afoot for taking her records back to Little Rock,” Wester wrote in a Dec. 11, 2012, email, citing NARA chief operating officer Tom Mills’s concerns.

Other reports Wednesday said that Clinton’s staff at State frequently asserted itself in Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, and at times tried to block the release of certain records.

Critics say Clinton’s use of private email helped her avoid accountability and also posed security risks.

Clinton and her campaign staff argue that she followed federal rules for email and acted like secretaries of State before her. 

Tags Bill Clinton Hillary Clinton

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