Politics

Obama: Clinton Email Scandal Has Been 'Ginned Up' Because Of Politics

| by Meg O'Connor
Hillary ClintonHillary Clinton

During an Oct. 11 interview on CBS's "60 Minutes," President Barack Obama expressed that while Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server while she served as Secretary of State was "a mistake," it did not endanger national security.

Obama said that government officials must be sensitive about how they handle information when conducting government business, but he added that the criticism of Clinton for using a private email server has been "ginned up" because of politics, according to the Associated Press.

"I think she'd be the first to acknowledge that maybe she could have handled the original decision better and the disclosures more quickly," Obama said on "60 Minutes," adding that he believed her use of the server was “not a situation in which America’s national security was endangered.”

During the interview, Obama also addressed the fact that his administration has a track record of being harsh when it comes to prosecuting people for possessing classified data on their private computers.

Obama said he didn't believe that Clinton had an intent to "hide something or to squirrel away information," and he added that he was initially unaware of her use of the private email server.

Despite this, Obama did note that "as a general proposition, when we’re in these offices, we have to be more sensitive and stay as far away from the line as possible when it comes to how we handle information, how we handle our own personal data."

The content of Clinton's private email server and the security of that system are still being investigated. Clinton's use of the server during her time as Secretary of State has become the focus of Republican-led investigations into the attacks in Benghazi in 2012, which resulted in the deaths of four Americans. 

Clinton is certain to be interrogated regarding the emails later this month, when she is scheduled to appear before a House committee on the matter. Clinton will also likely face questions on the matter during the upcoming Democratic presidential debate. 

So far, there is no evidence that Clinton disclosed classified information via her private email server. She has also said that her use of a private server was allowed at the time -- a claim that the State Department has confirmed.

Sources: AP via Huffington Post, The New York Times / Photo credit: Wikimedia, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff/Flickr