Secretary of State John Kerry on Thursday said he had “no knowledge what kind of email” Hillary Clinton used when she was at the State Department even though he exchanged messages with her when he was in the U.S. Senate.
The nation’s top diplomat, who testified on the State Department’s budget in front of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, also asserted that the American people “are really getting bored with” questions about the Clinton email scandal.
“You’re fixated on this,” Kerry told California Rep. [crscore]Darrell Issa[/crscore] after a tough line of questioning about Clinton’s email arrangement and his knowledge of it.
Issa, a Republican, pressed Kerry over emails revealed last month that show he sent emails from his personal address to Clinton’s personal address discussing government business. Information in one of those emails has been retroactively classified as “Secret,” the second-highest classification level. (RELATED: State Dept. Records Show John Kerry Sent Hillary ‘SECRET’ Emails From His iPad)
“I had no knowledge what kind of email she had, I was given an email address and I sent it to her,” Kerry told Issa.
Asked if he ever looked at Clinton’s email address during those exchanges, Kerry demurred.
“I didn’t think about it in that respect, I didn’t know if she had an account or what the department gave her at that point in time or what she was operating with. I had no knowledge,” he said.
Kerry has so far answered few questions in public about what he knew about Clinton’s email account. And despite his clearly knowing that Clinton used the email address HDR22@clintonemail.com, Kerry’s State Department appears to have waited nearly 18 months before taking the initiative to obtain Clinton’s emails.
Agency lawyers reportedly first reached out to Clinton’s handlers in July 2014 in an effort to obtain her emails. Under Secretary for Management Patrick Kennedy formally requested the emails in a letter sent in October 2014. Clinton handed over 55,000 pages of her work-related emails that December.
Kerry has yet to be asked why it took so long for his agency to spring into action on the matter.