At Least Seven Trump Admin. Officials Have Used Private Email For Gov’t Business
The Washington Post reported on Monday that Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross has used his personal email account to conduct official government business — bringing the total number of Trump administration officials who have done this to at least seven.
“From a nongovernment account,” The Post reported, “Ross has sent or received official correspondence about discussions with the European Commission for Trade, a U.S. ambassador’s meeting with German car manufacturers, a dinner featuring the ambassador of Japan, what appears to be an event related to billionaire businessman Bill Koch, and meeting requests from the far-right Internet troll Charles Johnson.”
The offending emails were obtained by nonprofit watchdog Democracy Forward through a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit.
“Some of these emails indicate that Secretary Ross illegally conducted government business on his private account,” read a statement from Democracy Forward’s press secretary, Charisma Troiano.
Ross denied the accusation, telling The Post: “These hysterical, baseless allegations of illegal activity are without merit.”
This latest report means at least seven Trump administration officials have used private email accounts to conduct official business.
The New York Times reported in 2017 that six others had done the same at one point or another during their tenure, including: Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and adviser; Ivanka Trump, the president’s daughter and adviser; Stephen K. Bannon, the former chief White House strategist; Reince Priebus, the former chief of staff; Gary Cohn, a former White House adviser; and Stephen Miller, another White House adviser.
The irony of Trump administration officials using private email accounts after President Donald Trump blasted Hillary Clinton repeatedly in 2016 for having used a private email server as secretary of state continues to amuse and irk the public — particularly as it became clear this week that the State Department is not yet finished investigating Clinton over the issue.