Rounds Cosponsors Bill to Revoke Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s Security Clearance

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) today cosponsored the Taking Responsibility Using Secured Technologies (TRUST) Act of 2016, which would revoke Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s security clearance as well as the security clearances of Secretary Clinton’s colleagues at the State Department who exhibited extreme carelessness in their handling of classified information. Additionally, the TRUST Act expresses the sense of Congress that Secretary Clinton should not have access to classified information unless she earns the legal right to such access.

 “In a press conference this week, FBI Director James Comey made clear that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her staff were ‘extremely careless’ and clearly mishandled highly-classified information that could have compromised our national security,” said Rounds. “Because the FBI and Department of Justice do not intend to move forward with charges, Congress is taking action to remove any possibility of these individuals mishandling sensitive national security information again. Access to classified information is a serious responsibility; at a minimum, they should not be trusted to handle this sensitive national security information in the future.”

 The legislation follows the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) investigation into Secretary Clinton’s use of a personal e-mail system in her capacity as Secretary of State. In an announcement earlier this week, FBI Director James Comey said that “there is evidence that they were extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information” and “none of these e-mails should have been on any kind of unclassified system, but their presence is especially concerning because all of these e-mails were housed on unclassified personal servers not even supported by full-time security staff.” The FBI uncovered several thousand additional emails related to her position, some of which contained classified material, that were not included in the 30,000 emails Clinton handed over to the State Department. Comey concluded the FBI’s findings with “we assess it is possible that hostile actors gained access to Secretary Clinton’s personal e-mail account.”

 Comey stated the investigation initially focused on whether classified information was transmitted on Secretary Clinton’s personal e-mail system. It evolved to determine whether there is evidence that classified information was not properly transmitted or stored on that personal e-mail system and whether there is evidence that the system was hacked by foreign or hostile hackers. While Comey confirmed that classified information was transmitted and stored improperly and the personal e-mail system may have been hacked, he formally recommended that no charges be filed against Secretary Clinton.