Inside the Slow Process of Reviewing Clinton's Email

State Dept. says needs until Jan. 15, 2016
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted May 19, 2015 6:25 AM CDT
Updated May 19, 2015 6:50 AM CDT
Coming in January: Clinton's Email
In this March 23, 2015 file photo, former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton speaks in Washington.   (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

The State Department is looking through the 55,000 pages of email that Hillary Clinton plunked on its doorstep in December—in paper form, in a dozen banker's boxes—and proposed last night in a court filing that the releasable portions see the public light of day in 2016, reports the AP. A rep says the department wants to move "expeditiously," per the New York Times, but John Hackett stated "the collection is ... voluminous and, due to the breadth of topics, the nature of the communications, and the interests of several agencies, presents several challenges." Bottom line: Taking into account the holidays, it would like to release what it can of Clinton's missives on Jan. 15, 2016. That timing could be critical for Clinton: The deadline comes just two weeks ahead of the Iowa caucuses on Feb. 1.

The "Your Tax Dollars at Work" section of the filing, which is in response to an FOIA request by Vice News: "Currently, this project is staffed full time by a project manager and two case analysts, as well as nine FOIA reviewers who devote the entirety of their time at the State Department to this effort, plus other analysts and information technology specialists who provide collateral assistance." Hackett says that team has been meeting daily since early last month, and explained that the department consulted with the National Archives and Records Administration on how to "identify, designate, mark, and inventory entirely personal correspondence." The State Department just finished five weeks of scanning the documents, notes Vice, which was complicated by the fact, per Hackett, "that some, but not all, of the paper records that the Department received [from Clinton] were double-sided." The plan is to review 1,000 emails per week. (More Hillary Clinton 2016 stories.)

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