Video: State Dept didn’t properly archive e-mails
posted at 8:41 am on March 12, 2015 by Ed Morrissey
In 2011, the State Department sent and received over a billion e-mails, according to this NBC News report, an average of about 40 a day for its 69,000 total employees. How many did State, under Hillary Clinton’s leadership for the third year of her tenure as Secretary of State, successfully archive in accordance with the Federal Records Act? According to a new inspector general’s report, only 61,156 — or about 0.00612% of the overall number sent and received, less than one per day per employee.
Most. Transparent. Administration. Evah.
Fox’ Greta van Susteren says “This report doesn’t sound good,” and The Hill’s A. B. Stoddard replies, “They didn’t care”:
The State Department’s internal watchdog has found that many department employees are not preserving emails for the public record as required by the government. That could mean a substantial amount of lost government information.
The inspector general’s office, in a report out Wednesday, said that in 2011, when Hillary Rodham Clinton was secretary of state, department employees wrote more than 1 billion emails but only marked 61,156 for the public record. There’s no way to know from the figures how many should have been designated as public records. Even fewer were marked for public records, 41,749, in 2013, the year when she left the department. …
The report found the laxity despite a 2009 upgrade in the system used to preserve emails as public records. It recommends better training, sharper guidelines for what should be made a public record and a department-wide review of how emails are used and kept.
Branches within the department varied widely in their preservation practices: The secretary’s office designated only seven emails as public records in 2013; the office of diplomatic security did so with 409 emails.
Emails are required to be preserved for the public record if they deal with policy, actions by officials, historically relevant information or meet a variety of other benchmarks. Among the more than 1 billion emails sent in 2011, some were work emails that did not meet those standards, others were personal and still others should have been captured for the record but weren’t. Emails that are not designated for the record may still become available for release later but become harder to find in the mountain of untapped government information.
In other words, it’s not just Hillary on the honor system, it was the whole organization that she ran. What a terrific system Secretary Clinton set up, too. It answers the age-old question: how much transparency would we get from bureaucrats if we allowed them to self-report their activity? Answer: 0.00612% transparency, that’s how much! That’s the reason why we have a Federal Records Act in the first place — to take those decisions out of the hands of the bureaucrats we want to hold accountable.
Put aside the e-mail scandal for a moment. Hillary’s tenure at State is the only executive experience she has on her resumé, and this just adds to the track record of incompetence she has established. Libya and Russia and especially Benghazi make her policy and operational incompetence clear, and this shows that she’s incompetent at regulatory compliance and management as well. She’s a disaster, but at least for the moment, she’s the Democrats’ disaster. Let’s hope Republicans nominate someone who can keep the catastrophe that limited over the next two years.