Just One More Request

Pity the poor official in charge of responding to the 24th request for documents in the past year by the congressional committee investigating Hillary Clinton’s e-mails.

Patrick Kennedy, the State Department’s under secretary for management, sat in the hot seat Sept. 8 in the latest congressional hearing into the former secretary of state’s e-mails.

Kennedy, who heads records management and Freedom of Information Act responses, said his office within the last month had received a number of discs from the FBI, and was in the process of counting and entering them into the department’s classified analysis. The State Department has counted roughly 14,900 records from Clinton’s e-mail server so far, but expects to uncover more from the discs.

House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah), holding his ninth investigation into the issue, had a simple request.

“How do I get Hillary Clinton’s calendars?” Chaffetz asked. “How difficult is a calendar?”

Rep. Jason Chaffetz

The beleaguered-looking Kennedy responded that the department currently was facing some 30,000 pending FOIA requests and had produced 26 million pages of historical declassification.

Producing Clinton’s calendars would become the 24th request by the committee in the past year, which had resulted in more than 185,000 pages of documents submitted to congressional investigators, Kennedy said.

Unmoved, Chaffetz said there were four “buckets” that the State Department has to deal with: FOIA requests, subpoenas, congressional inquiries and media requests.

“What is your game plan to deal with this?” Chaffetz said. “You didn’t ask for this—but this is what the consequence of Hillary Clinton’s convenience was, is you have to deal with it.”

Kennedy said the department will continue to review congressional document requests, reiterating that it had sent the committee close to 186,000 pages so far.

“And if has to be 187,000 or 197,000, we will work with you,” Kennedy said.