All the Other Times a Politician Avoided Official Email

A roundup from ProPublica.

Hillary Clinton at a speaking engagement in 2013. The former secretary of state has been criticized for using a private email account during her tenure.

Photo by Ramin Talaie/Getty Images

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has been on the defensive ever since the New York Times first reported that she used a private email account for government business.

But Clinton is hardly first government official to breach the public’s trust in this way. Here is a quick review of other officials .

Colin Powell relied on personal emails while secretary of state, Politico, March 2015
Since news of Clinton’s use of private email for White House business broke, an aide to Colin Powell says he “might have occasionally used personal email addresses” to correspond with staff and officials during his tenure as Secretary of State[1].


Bush Advisers’ Approach on E-Mail Draws Fire, New York Times, April 2007
The Bush Administration admits that as many as 22 political advisers to the president, including Bush advisor Karl Rove, used their Republican National Committee email accounts for White House related business. At the time, the RNC automatically purged emails after 30 days. Later, a White House spokesperson reported that as many as 5 million emails could have been lost from the White House’s official server.


Jeb Bush Owned Personal Email Server He Used as Governor, NBC News, March 2015
A Mar. 4, 2015 report from NBC News finds that from 1999 to early 2007 Jeb Bush used his own private email server for official business as Florida Governor.


Two ex-Walker aides charged with illegal campaigning, Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, January 2012
Two former aides to Gov. Scott Walker, while he was Executive of Milwaukee County, used a private Internet network to conduct campaign work. They are later charged with illegally campaigning on government time.

Trove of Palin E-Mails Draws Press to Alaska, New York Times, June 2011
In 2011, Sarah Palin releases more than 24,000 pages of emails sent from a private account while she was Alaska’s governor, responding to public records requests made in 2008. The emails reveal less-than scandalous details of her life,including her early attempts to meet John McCain, a draft ghostwritten letter to the editor in response to criticism against her and plans to see a controversial Christian pastor in Juno, Alaska.


U.S. Ambassador to Kenya J. Scott Gration resigns over “differences” with Washington, Washington Post, June 2012
J. Scott Gration, U.S Ambassador to Kenya, resigns in June 2012 just before the publication of an Office of Inspector General report that found he had “repeatedly violated diplomatic security protocols at the embassy” by using a private email account for official business.


Christie administration may have violated public records law, (Bergen County) Record, January 2014
The Record releases a cache of emails sent from personal accounts between top Chris Christie aides that reveals their plan to create a traffic jam over the George Washington Bridge possibly as retribution against the mayor of Fort Lee who refused to endorse Christie in the 2013 New Jersey gubernatorial election.


After Pledge of Sunlight, Gov. Cuomo Officials Keep Their Email in the Shadows, ProPublica, May 2014
ProPublica finds that top advisers to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo conduct government business through personal email accounts including Howard Glaser. ProPublica recently obtained emails from Glaser in which he touted his “significant, critical, and current input” on a deal that weakened rules to prevent misdeeds in the mortgage market.

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