The Corner

Politics & Policy

Wait, Doesn’t Bill Clinton Not Use E-mail?

As a former government employee myself, I’m sympathetic with Mrs. Clinton’s insistence that she is entitled to privacy in her private life. And that occasional use of official e-mail to see what’s for dinner or to talk about weekend plans with your spouse is none of anyone’s business, no matter which e-mail is used to send it.

But when Mrs. Clinton insists that her server “contains personal communications between my husband and me,” she runs into the brick wall of her husband’s own denial through a spokesman this morning that the former President ever even uses e-mail. From a Wall Street Journal blog:

The former president, who does regularly use Twitter has sent a grand total of two emails during his entire life, both as president, says Matt McKenna, his spokesman. After leaving office, Mr. Clinton established his own domain that staff use–@presidentclinton.com. But Mr. Clinton still doesn’t use email himself, Mr. McKenna said.

As president, Mr. Clinton’s first email was a message to John Glenn, the former senator and astronaut who in 1998 was making a return trip to space. Mr. Glenn wrote Mr. Clinton, and the president replied. “Hillary and I had a great time at the launch,” Mr. Clinton wrote in his note. “We are very proud of you and the entire crew, and a little jealous.”

Perhaps there is an innocuous explanation for this inconsistency. Maybe President Clinton’s spokesman just got it wrong, or maybe they communicate through intermediaries, which would hardly be private or personal. Either way, her statement raises more questions than it answers.

Shannen W. Coffin is a contributing editor to National Review. He practices appellate law in Washington, D.C.

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