Officials at the National Archives and Records Administration expressed concern that then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton would take important documents with her after she left the State Department and violate federal records laws.
In emails obtained by the government watchdog group Cause of Action, NARA’s chief records officer Paul Wester told employees in December 2012 that high-level officials wanted to make sure that Clinton did not transfer records to the Clinton Library in Little Rock, Arkansas that were required by federal law to stay with the records agency.
“[NARA COO Tom Mills] heard (or thought he heard) from the Clinton Library Director that there are or may be plans afoot for taking her [Mrs. Clinton’s] records from State to Little Rock,” Wester wrote in one of the emails.
Wester said that the agency was “aware of the issue” and emphasized that NARA employees should “make sure everyone leaving the Administration does not leave with Federal records.”
He also wrote that Mills and NARA’s director of the Federal Records Center Jay Trainer wanted to avoid a legal battle with Clinton over these documents that could parallel a similar fight the agency had with Henry Kissinger when he left the State Department in the 1970s. (RELATED: Top Lawyer At Federal Agency: Hillary’s Private Email Is A ‘Concern’)
It is unclear whether the records agency received the documents in question from Clinton.
Cause of Action executive director Dan Epstein said in a statement that this latest discovery is another indication that Hillary didn’t follow the rules when she left her State Department position.
“These records reveal that before Hillary Clinton exited the State Department, there were serious concerns about her violating federal records laws,” Epstein stated. “Yet, despite knowledge by the State Department and the Archives, nothing was done about it.”