White House defends Pence's use of private email while governor

Justin Greene
March 6, 2017

US Vice President Mike Pence denied charges of hypocrisy Friday, after it emerged he used a private email as governor of IN and while lambasting Hillary Clinton for doing the same.

In a tweet Saturday, Pence said that by publishing the personal AOL address of his wife, Karen, the AP "violated her privacy and our security". The vice president also posted a detailed letter addressed to Gary Pruitt, AP's president and CEO, demanding an apology for a story the news agency published Friday.

The Indianapolis Star reported that emails provided through a public records request show that Pence communicated with advisers through his personal AOL account on homeland security matters and security at the governor's residence during his four years as governor.

AP's Director of Media Relations, Lauren Easton, indicated that the AP removed the address from follow-up stories once they learned the account was active, IndyStar writes. "The AP stands by its story, which addresses important transparency issues". He used an AOL account to conduct official business when he was governor of IN, the Indianapolis Star reported this week. "Government emails involving his state and personal accounts are being archived by the state consistent with IN law, and are being managed according to Indiana's Access to Public Records Act".

Lotter says Pence's attorneys tried to deliver boxes of emails on January 9, his last day as governor. The official would not specify how many boxes, but said the emails were a mixture of messages from the governor's personal account to state account and from his personal account to non-state governmental accounts.

As Trump's running mate, Pence frequently criticized rival Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server as President Barack Obama's secretary of state, accusing her of purposely keeping her emails out of public reach and shielding her from scrutiny.

IN law does not bar public officials from using personal email, but generally does require that messages connected to official business be kept for public information purposes. "Now we commend the Federal Bureau of Investigation in this case for following the facts because in America, no one is above the law".

Pence's representatives released a statement following the disclosure.

Lotter did not explain if previous IN governors also used their personal email accounts to conduct state business.

The Indianapolis Star (http://indy.st/2m4OK6j ) says the emails were delivered Thursday to be archived for public review as required under Indiana law. He said he did not handle classified information as Clinton did.

Other reports by Ligue1talk

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