Republican Colin Powell Deals a Death Blow to Hillary Clinton Email Scandal

colin powell hillary clinton emails

On ABC’s This Week, former Sec. of State Colin Powell admitted that he used a private email account for public business. Powell’s explanation of why he used a private email account amounted to a death blow for Republicans who are trying to build a scandal out of Hillary Clinton’s emails.


Transcript via ABC’s This Week:

STEPHANOPOULOS: But I do want to ask you one final question on this Hillary Clinton e-mail controversy. Which, of course, put you back in the news a bit this week, as well.

You were secretary of State during the early days of e-mails. You were one of the first secretaries, I believe, to set up a personal e-mail account. And you pushed to modernize the State Department’s system.

Based on your experience, what do you make of these revelations this week and what would you recommend that she do now?

POWELL: I — I can’t speak to a — Mrs. Clinton and what she should do now. That would be inappropriate.

What I did when I entered the State Department, I found an antiquated system that had to be modernized and modernized quickly.

So we put in place new systems, bought 44,000 computers and put a new Internet capable computer on every single desk in every embassy, every office in the State Department. And then I connected it with software.

But in order to change the culture, to change the brainware, as I call it, I started using it in order to get everybody to use it, so we could be a 21st century institution and not a 19th century.

But I retained none of those e-mails and we are working with the State Department to see if there’s anything else they want to discuss with me about those e-mails.


POWELL: (INAUDIBLE) have a stack of them.

STEPHANOPOULOS: — they’ve asked you to turn them over, but you don’t have them, is that it?

POWELL: I don’t have any — I don’t have any to turn over. I did not keep a cache of them. I did not print them off. I do not have thousands of pages somewhere in my personal files.

And, in fact, a lot of the e-mails that came out of my personal account went into the State Department system. They were addressed to State Department employees and the domain. But I don’t know if the servers the State Department captured those or not.

And most — they were all unclassified and most of them, I think, are pretty benign, so I’m not terribly concerned even if they were able to recover them.

Powell’s description of his own emails as pretty benign matches up with Rep. Adam Schiff’s description of the Hillary Clinton emails that the Benghazi committee has read. According to Sen. Chuck Schumer, Clinton’s private email system was based on the system that Powell used.

The technology available in most federal agencies is woefully outdated. It isn’t surprising that appointees would use technology that is available in the private sector because it is better. Powell’s emails from his personal account went into the State Department system because they were addressed to employees in State. The same is the case with the Clinton emails. Powell’s discussion of his own experience with his personal email account adds credibility to the claim that there is nothing to see here.

If Hillary Clinton broke the law, as some Republicans are claiming, then Colin Powell also broke the law.

The more that is revealed about the use of private email, the more it looks like Republicans are trying to make something out of nothing. It has been a bad day for the Republican Clinton email scandal, and it is only going to get worse for the Republican Party as they continue to go down what looks like a dead end.

63 Replies to “Republican Colin Powell Deals a Death Blow to Hillary Clinton Email Scandal”

  1. Well General Sir, we need to get to the bottom of this and find out the ‘truth.’ We need George Bush on this matter right away. He’ll find the emails and the truth about Bengahzi in a jiffy the same way he found those weapons of mass destruction in Iraq that we had a war about by golly….Nessus

  2. I had to use a dot gov e-mail system in 2010, we would have been better off and faster served with carrier pigeons.

  3. Won’t help, Powell is disliked by a lot of Repubs for his stand on voting rights and approval of some of President Obama’s moves.

  4. That is the Republican standard ” to try and make something out of nothing”, since they have no real interest in governing.

  5. Republicans have been a dead end party since Ronnie Retard was president. Nothing new there. They run on who can be the bigger bigot or who’s the best christian. Snooze news.

  6. Hillary broke multiple Federal Laws

    18 U.S.C. 2071 – Concealment of Records
    Whoever, having the custody of any such record, proceeding, map, book, document, paper, or other thing, willfully and unlawfully conceals, removes ..shall be fined under this title or imprisoned ..and shall forfeit his office and be disqualified from holding any office under the United States

    44 U.S. Code 3106 – Unlawful removal, destruction of records
    The head of each Federal agency shall notify the Archivist of any actual, impending, or threatened unlawful removal, defacing, alteration, or destruction of records in the custody of the agency of which he is the head.

  7. Yes, well, you see, if they can point their fingers at Hillary’s e-mails and scream and holler about how she broke the law, etc, etc, etc, people won’t look at their failure to have accomplished a thing in the 2 1/2 months they have been “in charge” in congress.

  8. Speaking as a former government employee let me tell you carrier pigeons are better
    and faster. So are paper cups and string

  9. I believe Colin Powell to be the last Republican with a sense of integrity. I also believe he has been waiting for this ‘gotcha’ moment to get even with the prick party that pushed him under the bus.

    Clinton/Powell in 2016 doesn’t sound bad at all.

  10. Next you will quote a statute of limitations. The emails are all there and have been given to those who requested them, so where is the willful withholding or destruction?

    It’s nice to see your hate extends beyond blacks, you also seem to hate women. If we could only elect a black transgender candidate with an Hispanic surname. That would fill your quota of hate for a lifetime.

    It’s so sad you hate your country to the extent that you do.

  11. But Colin Powell can’t possibly be a *real* Republican, at least not these days–he’s far too suntanned to be acceptable to the True Believers.

  12. Colin Powell should not be a Repugnant because he has integrity and they don’t deserve him.

  13. The crime Issa is saying Hilary “committed” is not turning documents to the Benghazi committee. Of course, she didn’t turn over all the documents they want. They want a smoking gun. The fact it isn’t there, well…

  14. Lest anyone forget, Powell was elbows’-deep in the Iran/Contra scandal, and his political theater with a vial of fake anthrax, showed he was little more than a team player. Reading all the fawning comments about his supposed integrity was a bit much for me to stomach, sorry.

  15. You are right. To the conservative wing they see Colin Powell as nothing more than a black turncoat. The Benghazzi zombie mantra will drone on and on.

  16. Well then. Why don’t all these fire-starting chaos-loving let’s kill em all Repugs turn in all of their copies of all of their emails????????????????????? RIGHT NOW.

  17. What about the 20 million emails from the White House that Bush and the other crooks destroyed when he left office. Do they matter or should we consider them safe because Fox News hasn’t found a problem with them.

  18. The whole scandal is silly and frivolous, but let’s not be hyperbolic. This is not a “death blow.” It’s just an added bit of information. I’m afraid the “discussion” of this nonsense has not yet played itself out.

  19. I seem to remember a couple of weeks before Bush/Cheney left Washington, that I read there was a shredding truck outside Cheney’s house for days shredding documents 24/7.

  20. This is called: Liar, liar your Kn%tts are on fire. How trifling can the GOP get before someone says get real? We need to stop lying and the racist BS about the Prez. As of today we’ve done absolutely nothing to benefit the American people.[wink]

  21. So, it’s ok to break the law since Mr. yellowcake uranium Colin Powell broke the law? That’s a pretty ridiculous argument. I would prefer my leaders to not intentionally (or unintentionally) break the law, particularly in the self-described “most transparent administration in history.”

  22. Sweet mercy… Hillary’s been in bunker mode and has still somehow managed to step in it. Imagine when she gets out on the slog of the daily campaign trail.

    I dunno, but I think I can hear the cacophony from the calls to Warren from those big Dem donors from my house.

  23. so it’s okay that public officials delete their whole email history because Colin Powell did it? really? do you people understand the concept of accountability? do you understand that there is none if public officials just have their own personal accounts that no one sees? how is this okay with everyone here? I find the acceptance without question of this the most disturbing aspect actually ;-(

  24. Problem with “death blow” theory. Colin ain’t running for prez. Hil probably is. This IS a VERY bad scandal because she insisted everyone else on her team use a .gov account. Colin, on the other hand, was in the middle of a massive change to the computer systems. I know this because I experienced the same hassles at that time with my own .mil accounts. Hil needs to retire, write a book and let someone else get in front. She is old, tired, and too closely associated with scandal after scandal streching all the way back to Whitewater and her shady investing schemes. The tiredness shows on her face and those sunglasses she needs to wear even in doors in bright light due to her brain injury just make it worse. Last problem? Women who are polled don’t like her. That’s the fact, Jack.

  25. What utter bullshit! It was a supposed “Big” deal when the tragedy occurred. Despite the pleas from the Ambassador’s family, the Tea Party “owned and operated, corporate controlled, fake grassroots movement,” still politicized the matter. It was a HUGE scandal we were told. A stand down order was issued, directly from the President. OMG! We must act, and act, and act, and act, ad nauseum.

    The committee during their congressional break, provided a data dump including the debunking of every single conspiracy attached to this most horrible and tragic event. NOTHING that was circulated was true. Even the damned GOP Committee Chair, Darrell the Arsonist Issa wrote in his conclusion that there was nothing to the damned scandal.

    At some point, you folks are going to have to dcecide: do you wish to continue being indebted to a movement that is premised on racism and hatred for a man they think is illegitimately serving as POTUS, or tell them all to go to Hell! Nothing here!

  26. Who told you that anybody deleted their email history? Have you read anything about what actually happened? There are now new laws (last year) requiring those in political office to use separate email accounts for official work. At the time Powell and Hillary were in office there was no law requiring it. Therefore, neither of them did anything illegal. Furthermore, upon request last year, all former Secretaries of State were requested to provide copies of their official emails. Hillary Clinton turned over many more emails than any other former Secretary of State. That is historical fact.

  27. So the big scandal is that the State Department is so behind the times in its communication that the people in charge are putting together whatever they can to make do, and most of their emails are Yawn City, and sitting somewhere in the State Department gathering dust? Oh, but instead of keeping up to date on computers, the defense wing of our government has spend its money (ours, really) on weapons that are even more out of date, in some cases, or could, if used, wipe out the rest of the world–and us–many times over, not to mention most likely, most of our nearby planet neighbors in the solar system. Yup, we really should scream loudly and crazily about some emails.

  28. thanks, democat, for putting it in perspective. Focus on the little speck and do not remove the log from your own eye, or something like that. Huge huge problems in the defense department and allocation of funds, but we cannot install up to date tech systems. Even my computer system as antiquated as it is, is probably better that the government has to offer. Yet employees are expected to respond and react immediately. And say, what about the iphones and ipads they all have? Are they being held accountable?

  29. Media is driving this major. I had Morning Joe on twice this morning for maybe a total of 15 seconds. Stupid Joe and idiot Mika were pretty much foaming at the mouth.This is all a deflection from the fiasco of the entire republican party of dopes.

  30. The GOP are so stupid. Colin Powell would have made a great candidate for the oval office. Instead Bush had him hold up that little baggie on nat’ll TV and his reputation has not recovered. The political trump card that the Republicans have not been able to counter is the Democrats ‘inclusiveness’ (this is all nonsense of course Obama is only appreciated as far as he is in line with liberal dogma) but had they Run Powell a solid candidate in truth (and an African American) at the very least the media would have to reach for reasons as to why they disapproved of him. It would put this non-issue to rest. Right now the liberals are riding an orgy of self-congratulations, and really feel that there loose-brained ideology has won out. The GOP has to start thinking a little bit. This country can’t take another eight years of far left rule.

  31. Yeah, “death blow”? I don’t think so. This thing hasn’t even started.

    Months and months and months of emails missing after being requested to turn them over. That alone is not good for her. Not to mention the how irresponsible it was to use her own private email server dealing with foreign governments when it could’ve been easily hacked by anyone.

    Is that who you want to be the next president?

  32. I wish he had been honest in the lead up to Bush/Cheney/MSM deal with Israel and the Iraqi war. Just think how much better off America and especially millions Iraqis would be if he had called them out about their lies…Things he KNEW were lies. But then all the trillions and stolen oil would not have wound up in “the bases hands” Even when he tells the truth I can never forgive him for what he did. He proved himself to be tool and a coward. So many things I have forced myself to if not forgive at least try to forget. What I had for supper is easy. But the lies that did so much damage to so many people I just can’t.

  33. As far as email goes. I should hope they have another server than Yahoo or Google or Outlook. I am almost 79 years old..and have had a PAID account for years. Believe this, I do not go surfing around willy nilly and putting my address where it’s “out there”. I won’t even sign a petition that I believe in. I have never been to a porn site in all these years. Since 1998. A few political newsletters, recipes, sewing, crafts and five or six relatives and WTV friends, I have been knowing for years, that is my “wild side”. But even as boring as my lil ole life is I still get 20-30 spam to every legitimate piece. I have gotten at least 5 Dr. Oz just this morning. Who in he…err the world is Dr. Oz? I can just mention some whiny thing in EMAIL, not surfing but supposedly private email and the next thing I know I am getting spam about OTC drugs or garbage like Dr. Oz. I would certainly HOPE someone with the intelligence and resources like Hillary Clinton could do much better.

  34. Powell maybe would have been a good POTUS, but he isn’t conservative enough for this GOP just like Palin thinks the Pope isn’t conservative enough, either. We have never had “far left” rule, as you put it. Obama is more center and has right of center policy positions on some issues.

  35. So because Powell did not follow the law means it is ok for Hillary to break the law? Typical liberal thinking they did it so I can do it. And then they want complete transparency, except when it shows how hypocritical they are. Oh one other point the law has changed since Powell was Sec of State. Keep scratching at hiding your cat crap in the litter of the liberal mind.

  36. You know who is trampling over the Constitution. Republicans
    All but seven Republican senators have signed on to an open letter to Iran warning that as soon as President Obama leaves office, Republicans will undo any nuclear deal he might enter into with Iran:

    I am sick and tired of this bullshit over emails when there are more important issues facing this nation. You effing haters need to get a life

  37. Here’s the death blow to this argument:

    The State Dept policy on personal emails was put in place in 2005, the year Powell left office. He didn’t break any laws. Hillary did.

    What’s wrong with our press that they ignore this fact? They set us up to argue over events by not giving us all the facts.

  38. Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.. We ain’t seen nothin’ yet! Remember the 90s when Dan Burton did his own “investigation” of Vince Foster’s suicide by shooting at pumpkins?

    Whack-jobs are gonna be whack-jobs. There’s no stopping them.

  39. The facts in this case don’t change based on the source. Feel free to do your own research that says otherwise. Also, before you get any ideas about me, I consider republicans and democrats to be more similar than different and I don’t cherry pick which side to confront.

  40. LIAR – LIAR – LIAR





  41. It’s not well reported, but please note that the U.S. at a cost of 70 million dollars secretly shipped at the time 550 tons of yellow cake uranium out of Iraq to Canada in 2008.

    Hope this opens your mind to a little more exploration than that of listen to a Democrat, or Democrat supporter, and repeat the see nothing here move on mantra.

    Hillary Clinton broke state department guidelines/rules/laws posted in 2006 coming in and then leaving the department plain and simple. It’s up to you to look at the laws as a citizen, or blindly listen to pundits who support your point of view as a partisan.

    We need more citizens!!!!

  42. It’s time to wake up Billy and read the laws and guidelines. By 2006 State Department guidelines she had to use a (.gov) email address and turn her personal emails over that involved business. At a minimum the law says the personal emails need to be turned over by e-file versus 55,000 printed pages of only what Clinton wanted people to see. The (e) after all does mean electronic.

    By law Hillary was also supposed to turn the e-mails 2 years ago when she left office and signed a form saying that she had done so,and not when the heat gets turned up. Hmmm…she also broke the paperwork reduction act that saves trees by not turning over electronically.

    It’s still early on this one, but we’ll see if another stinking layer will be pulled back off this onion that Clinton could have used up to 10 different email addresses under her private account.

    That’s why there are (.gov…

  43. Tom, you are taking the democratic talking points down hook line and sinker. There were laws in place in 2006 that say public employees have to use (.gov) email addresses for public business. The 2014 law you refer to being used to muddy the waters on this issue merely strengthen the wording that work emails on your ‘separate’ but private account have to be turned over to the government archives, and at that by e-file and not printed documents. Do your own research on any given issue and don’t be duped by talking points meant to hid the truth.

  44. Exactly what law did Hilary Clinton break? Do you have a link to this law? Or are you just parroting what some media outlets alluded to? I’d like to know what law she broke.

  45. I don’t think your readers will fall for your dishonest analysis. Whether or not this email controversy is a real scandal, it’s obvious Colin Powell’s situation was very different from Hillary’s. Most importantly, the rules changed in 2009, making what Hillary did improper. Back when Powell was SOS, there was no such rule prohibiting private email use by State Dept. employees.

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