The State Department will not meet the deadline to release the remainder of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s emails because of a clerical error and a blizzard.
The department filed on Jan. 28 that it had failed to send 7,000 of the remaining 9,000 Clinton emails for review because of an internal oversight.
They had simply forgot and realized the mistake three weeks ago, and their attempts to fix the mistake were hampered by the blizzard that shut down Washington D.C. this past week.
Presidential candidate Clinton had used a private server while she served as Secretary, which has sparked concern that sensitive government documents sent to her email address could have been vulnerable to leaks.
Over the past year, the State Department has been releasing Clinton’s emails into the public record.
This process has been done in installments, the department submitting the emails to 18 different intelligence agencies to verify if any of them contain sensitive material before releasing them.
A number of Clinton’s emails have been retroactively stamped as classified, indicating that the State Department and intelligence agencies have a difference of opinion on what should be top secret.
The department had until the end of January to release the remaining 9,000 emails. State officials say that while a portion will be released on Jan. 29, 7,000 still need to be reviewed by 12 intelligence agencies and have filed for Feb. 29 extension.
“State regrets that it must seek this extension, but the extension is necessary to ensure that the emails are properly reviewed for public release,” the department said in a statement, according to the Washington Times.
Vice reporter Jason Leopold, who had sued for the release of the emails, has protested the extension. His attorney, Ryan James, said that the delay would be “giving a big middle finger” to early caucus voters, according to The Daily Caller.
The concern is that by Feb. 29, there would have already been several Democratic primary contests. While there is no proof that anything will emerge from the remaining 7,000 emails that would disqualify Clinton from the presidency, Leopold and James maintain that they would be relevant to voters making an informed decision.
“Voters deserve to know the facts before they cast their ballots, not after,” added Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus, according to The Hill.