Secretary of State John Kerry says the government conducts "a massive amount of over-classification" of information – and declares there's "no evidence" so far showing Hillary Clinton's controversial private email system transmitted classified data.
"First of all, I'm not commenting on the merits of this, generally speaking, because there's an investigation
taking place," Kerry tells the Huffington Post.
The website also posted a transcript
of the interview.
"But one of the judgments that can be made to date is that there is no evidence that something was transmitted that was classified at the time."
As secretary of state, Clinton wrote and sent at least six e-mails using her private server containing what government officials now say is classified information, The Washington Post has reported.
Kerry tells the Huffington Post part of the problem is information-guarding overkill.
"I mean, there's a massive amount of over-classification," he tells the website. "People just stamp it on quickly because it's a way to sort of be correct if anybody had a judgment that somehow they had been wrong about whether it should be classified or not. So the easy thing is classify it and put it away."
Kerry says he's started an inter-department review – including the inspector general
– "so that we have as much accountability and insight on our own system as we can have."
"You know, this whole phenomenon of email, obviously, is something that's developed in the last years, and the system needs to catch up: How do you manage it properly? How do you handle so much volume?" he tells the Huffington Post.
Kerry also batted back comparisons between Clinton and whistleblowers the government goes after for leaking classified information.
"Whistleblowing on that is about classified information," Kerry tells the website. "But if information came in to somebody's BlackBerry or on somebody's email that wasn't classified, and then was later classified in the system, that's a whole different ballgame."
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