U.S. District Court Judge Emmet G. Sullivan heard arguments on Monday, July 18, 2016, in our request to take testimony from former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
We submitted reply briefs (available here and here) to the court in response to the State Department and Secretary Clinton’s oppositions to our request for permission to depose Hillary Clinton, the Director of Office of Correspondence and Records of the Executive Secretariat (“S/ES-CRM”) Clarence Finney; and the former Director of Information Resource Management of the Executive Secretariat (“S/ES-IRM”) John Bentel.
These proceedings arise in our Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit seeking records about the controversial employment status of Huma Abedin, former deputy chief of staff to Clinton. The lawsuit was reopened because of revelations about the clintonemail.com system (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of State (No. 1:13-cv-01363)).
In our replies, we argued, among other things:
Secretary Clinton’s deposition is necessary to complete the record. Although certain information has become available through investigations by the Benghazi Select Committee, the FBI, and the State Department Inspector General, as well as through Plaintiff’s narrowly tailored discovery to date, significant gaps in the evidence remain. Only Secretary Clinton can fill these gaps, and she does not argue otherwise.
To [Judicial Watch’s] knowledge, Secretary Clinton has never testified under oath why she created and used the clintonemail.com system to conduct official government business. Her only public statements on the issue are unsworn.
Very soon after making the filings, the court ordered Clinton and the State Department to file responses to our reply briefs no later than noon on July 15. (View the filings here and here.) Judge Sullivan also ordered the State Department to be prepared to discuss at the hearing how much time the agency will need to search the new Clinton emails the FBI is turning over, thanks to Judicial Watch’s litigation.