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RNC Files Lawsuits For Hillary Clinton-Related Records

- March 14, 2016

WASHINGTON – The Republican National Committee (RNC) yesterday filed four lawsuits in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to compel the State Department and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to produce records related to Hillary Clinton’s tenure as Secretary of State. The records were previously requested from the State Department and USAID under FOIA last year. No documents or information have been provided.

“Despite the State Department’s responsibility under the law to comply with FOIA requests in a timely way, our requests have gone unanswered for months,” RNC Chairman Reince Priebus said. “For too long the State Department has been running interference for Hillary Clinton by blocking our requests, a stance which disregards the rights of voters asking questions in a presidential election year about how she conducted herself as Secretary of State. These lawsuits are intended to expedite the release of records covered under FOIA that will allow Americans to hold Hillary Clinton accountable.”

BACKGROUND

One lawsuit seeks communications between certain senior officials within the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and certain senior State Department officials. The same lawsuit also seeks communications between certain senior USAID officials and private domain names that are currently or were previously owned and operated by Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton and their key associates and affiliated organizations, including the Clinton Foundation.

Another lawsuit seeks documentation and related information on certain senior State Department officials’ training, and handling of classified information. The same lawsuit also seeks any “dissent channel” cables sent to certain senior State Department officials. (According to the State Department’s Foreign Affairs Manual, the Dissent Channel was created to allow less senior officials to communicate alternative or dissenting views to Department leadership when such views cannot be expressed through existing channels in a full and timely manner.)

Another lawsuit seeks communications between certain senior State Department officials and private domain names that are currently or were previously owned and operated by Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton and their key associates and affiliated organizations, including the Clinton Foundation.

Another lawsuit seeks records pertaining to visitor logs or related records to then-Secretary Clinton’s formal quarters or personal office and the State Department’s Diplomatic Reception Room. The same lawsuit also seeks solicitations or records of donations through the “Patrons of Diplomacy” program to fund the renovation of U.S. State Department Diplomatic Reception rooms. The same lawsuit also seeks records related to financial disclosure and ethics training regarding certain senior State Department officials.

All of the FOIA requests included in these lawsuits were filed throughout 2015, with the earliest dating back to September 2015. FOIA was intended to inform and educate citizens about their government and elected officials.  Disclosure of the records requested in these lawsuits would carry out that purpose.  The RNC seeks records that will ensure that the public has information to consider whether former Secretary Clinton is fit to serve as the next President of the United States.

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