US President Donald Trump tweeted praise for efforts by the privately-backed conservative activist Judicial Watch group to depose former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her former chief of staff, Cheryl Mills, on the use of a private email server and on "talking points" regarding a 2012 attack on the US embassy in Benghazi, Libya. Trump described the topic as a "treasure trove" and expressed regret that so few people were exploring allegations of misconduct by Clinton.
Great Job by Judicial Watch. Potentially a treasure trove. Too bad you are not given more help, but it will all work out! https://t.co/rTYq9YCj2Q— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 15, 2020
Trump tweeted a recent update from the Judicial Watch team, revealing that lawyers for the former Secretary of State and her staffer have been appealing a recent US District court decision that ordered the deposition of the two on the email server and the Benghazi attack records.
"This desperate act is yet another attempt by the Clinton machine to delay truth and accountability for her email conduct and how it impacted the people’s ‘right to know’ under FOIA [Freedom of Information Act]" Judicial Watch president Tom Fitton stated on 14 March.
The issue of Clinton's use of a private email server, instead of one protected by the government, resurfaced amid the 2016 presidential election campaign as the FBI probed the former Secretary of State for misconduct. Despite that the use of a private server prevents her emails, including those that could be related to the 2012 Benghazi attack, from being available via FOIA, the FBI advised against opening a criminal case against Clinton, merely describing her actions as "extremely careless".
The results of the investigation reportedly left Trump dissatisfied, as he complained that alleged attempts by Clinton to hide emails from the public must be investigated and, if necessary, prosecuted. The former Secretary of State claimed to have complied with federal law in how she handled her work correspondence, noting that her predecessors and several members of the Trump administration have also used private email servers for official communications.