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March 11, 2015

AP sues State Department for access to Hillary Clinton's emails

The Associated Press filed a lawsuit Wednesday against the State Department in order to gain access to email correspondence and government documents from Hillary Clinton’s tenure as secretary of state, the New York Daily News reports.

Repeated requests filed under the U.S. Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) have gone unfulfilled, including a request made by the AP five years ago and others pending since the summer of 2013.

“After careful deliberation and exhausting our other options, The Associated Press is taking the necessary legal steps to gain access to these important documents, which will shed light on actions by the State Department and former Secretary Clinton, a presumptive 2016 presidential candidate, during some of the most significant issues of our time,” said Karen Kaiser, AP’s general counsel.

The AP had sought Clinton-related correspondence before her use of a personal email account was publicly known, although Wednesday’s court filing alleges that the State Department is responsible for including emails from that account in any public records request.

Clinton has come under fire for her use of a private email account for official business when she served as the top U.S. diplomat because of concerns about security and concerns that she shielded important facts about her tenure from the public.   

Clinton said on Tuesday it would have been better if she had used a government email account and a separate mobile device as U.S. secretary of state but said the vast majority of her correspondence went to employees using government addresses.

A leading Republican critic of Clinton said on Wednesday he wants the former secretary of state to testify about her controversial use of personal email for government work by April, timing that could coincide with her expected launch of a 2016 presidential campaign.

"I would like to have it done by April," Rep. Trey Gowdy, a South Carolina Republican who chairs a congressional committee investigating the 2012 attacks on a U.S. diplomatic facility in Benghazi, Libya, said on Wednesday.

Information from Reuters was used in this report.

Read the full story from the New York Daily News.