Judicial Watch: Federal Judge Orders State Department to Release Documents Regarding Hillary Clinton’s iPhone and iPad Use
(Washington, DC) – Judicial Watch announced today that a federal judge has ordered the State Department to begin releasing documents by August 2015 regarding former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s requests for use of an iPad and iPhone. The order comes in response to a Judicial Watch lawsuit (Judicial Watch, Inc. v. U.S. Department of State (No. 1:15-cv-00646)) seeking documents related to Clinton’s use of an iPhone and iPad to conduct official business while secretary of state.
In her ruling, Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly required the State Department to produce the first round of relevant documents by August 20, 2015, and held that Judicial Watch and the State Department will be responsible for filing a joint status report by September 1, 2015, “…proposing a schedule for further productions and indicating the volume and scope of responsive documents.” Beginning August 20, the State Department will also be required to release new documents every six weeks.
Though the State Department did not object to producing records beginning in August, Judge Kollar-Kotelly denied the State Department’s request to set January 2016 as the final document production date, holding:
The Court will not set a final deadline for all productions until after it has had an opportunity to consider that Joint Status Report—in order to leave open the possibility that the production of documents can be completed more expeditiously than the January 2016 deadline proposed by the Defendant.
In the most recent report to the court, Judicial Watch opposed the State Department’s request to extend final production through January 2016.
Judicial Watch filed the lawsuit after the Department of State failed to comply with Judicial Watch’s March 10, 2015, Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request seeking release of the following:
Any and all records of requests by former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton or her staff to the State Department Office Security Technology seeking approval for the use of an iPad or iPhone for official government business; and
Any and all communications within or between the Office of the Secretary of State, the Executive Secretariat, and the Office of the Secretary and the Office of Security Technology concerning, regarding, or related to the use of unauthorized electronic devices for official government business.
On March 31, 2015, The Associated Press reported that Clinton, while secretary of state, had used an iPad to email members of her staff, contradicting her statements that she had used a secret email account so that she could conveniently conduct official business on one electronic device alone. Reports of Clinton’s use of both a secret email server based at her residence and of an iPad to conduct government business have also raised concerns about the security of Clinton’s communications.
“The federal courts are doing a significant service to the American people by ordering the State Department to release documents regarding Mrs. Clinton’s iPhone and iPad use,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “Rather than admitting that it unlawfully, obstructed the public’s right to know for years and start producing records, the Obama administration has stonewalled and fought Judicial Watch in court. Can there be any other explanation for these violations of transparency and other laws, some which may include criminal liability, than Hillary Clinton and the Obama administration don’t want the American people to learn embarrassing truths?”