Clinton's Rebuttal to Email 'Smoking Gun' Doesn't Wash

By Richard Morris & Eileen McGann

January 13, 2016 2 min read

Appearing on "Face the Nation" on Sunday morning, Hillary Clinton tried to rebut the charge that she instructed an aide to violate the rules for handling classified information by taking a secure fax message and "turning [a memo] into nonpaper w no identifying heading and send nonsecure."

An email to Jake Sullivan gave him that instruction, obviously meaning that he should remove the classified identification on the top of the page and send it as a regular email, a practice that would violate federal law. A document identified as classified cannot technically be sent on State Department emails.

Clinton defended her action by insisting that the material was never actually sent in the fashion she recommended. She also claimed that she needed information and "was waiting for a secure fax that could give me the whole picture."

But her email does not suggest anything about sending only an unclassified part of the fax. She said, "turning [a memo] into nonpaper with no identifying heading and send nonsecure." And the text of the email, as well as the subject line, were redacted, so it was likely discussing classified material. And if it wasn't classified, it would not have to be sent as a secure fax. Sullivan could have just sent it as an email and there would be no issue about any heading.

Whether it was actually sent or not is not an issue. What is an issue is her apparent familiarity with a procedure to circumvent the security system in place to protect classified information. She responded right away when she was told there would be a delay in sending a secure fax. This, from a woman whose emails show she doesn't know how to operate a fax, an iPad, email or a TV. She can't even type and doesn't keep a computer in her office because she doesn't know how to use one.

But she sure knew how to get around the rules on transmitting classified material.

Her defense is just one more Hillary Clinton lie.

Photo credit: Matt Buck

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