State Department seeks extension to release Clinton’s emails

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton speaks during a rally Thursday, Jan. 21, 2016, in Vinton, Iowa.
Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton speaks during a rally Thursday, Jan. 21, 2016, in Vinton, Iowa. AP

The State Department is asking a federal judge for a one-month extension to finish releasing Hillary Clinton's emails, a State official said Friday.

State Department Deputy Spokesperson Mark Toner confirmed Friday that the State Department filed a motion asking for an extension until Feb. 29 in the Freedom of Information Act case, Leopold v. State, which has required it to release Clinton’s emails monthly. The department is supposed to release the emails by Jan. 31.

The Department will be releasing emails Jan. 29 but it will not the court’s goal of producing the remaining emails from Clinton, Toner said. If the request is granted, the remainder of the approximately 55,000 pages would be posted in February.

“State Department staff have been working extremely hard to process these emails and we are committed to getting them out,” Toner said. “The court’s goal for this month’s production represented the largest number of pages to date. The remaining emails are also the most complex to process as they contain a large amount of material that required interagency review. The cause of this delay is not due to any ongoing discussion about classification that has been in the news as of late.”

At least 1,340 emails that Clinton sent or received contained classified material, according to the State Department’s latest update from its ongoing review of more than 30,000 emails.

None of Clinton’’s emails was marked as classified during her tenure, State Department officials say, but intelligence officials say some material was clearly classified at the time. Her aides also sent and received classified information.

Clinton has been under fire for months for exclusively using personal email routed through a private server while serving as the nation’s top diplomat. The FBI launched an inquiry into the handling of sensitive information after classified information was found in some.

In response to a public records lawsuit, the State Department is releasing Clinton’s emails at the end of each month after partially or entirely redacting any containing sensitive U.S. or foreign government information. So far, it has released 43,148 pages of emails.

The announcement comes after Inspector General Charles McCullough III told senators that he believes at least several dozen of emails Clinton sent and received while she was secretary of state contained classified material at the highest levels, according to a letter obtained by McClatchy.