Hillary Clinton said in Iowa on Monday that she will not apologize for using a personal email account and private email server as secretary of state, claiming that the home-brew setup “was allowed” by the State Department.
Clinton also denied that the scandal over her email arrangement is harming her campaign for president.
“What I did was allowed,” Clinton told the Associated Press after being asked why she still won’t apologize for her off-the-books email arrangement. “It was allowed by the State Department. The State Department has confirmed that.”
Clinton’s defiant stance comes days after she expressed sorrow that the scandal has confused the American people.
“I disagree with the choice that I made,” Clinton told MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell in an interview that aired Friday. “At the end of the day, I am sorry that this has been confusing to people.”
Clinton was criticized by some who believed her pseudo-apology was condescending.
In her interview with the AP, Clinton maintained that she did not send or receive any emails that were “marked classified.”
“I take the responsibilities of handling classified materials very seriously and did so,” she said.
Despite Clinton’s claim that she did not handle information marked classified when it was generated, the Intelligence Community inspector general has determined that at least two emails that traversed Clinton’s email server contained information that was considered “top secret” at the time it was sent. One email reportedly concerned information gleaned from U.S. spy satellites about the movements of North Korean nuclear weapons.
The FBI seized Clinton’s email server from a New Jersey data center last month.
Clinton also asserted that the FBI is not conducting a criminal investigation into her server but, rather, “a security review.”
“People are asked to provide any copies of any of these materials that are the subject of the debate. So, I immediately said, ‘turn over everything,'” she told the AP.
“I don’t know anything technical about servers,” she added. “But I am informed it doesn’t have anything on it. But for safekeeping, turn it over as part of the security review.”
Asked if her campaign has been hurt by the email scandal, Clinton said “not at all.” She added, however, “it’s a distraction, certainly.”
“But it hasn’t in any way affected the plan for our campaign, the efforts we’re making to organize here in Iowa and elsewhere in the country. And I still feel very confident about the organization and the message that my campaign is putting out.”