State Department releases over 3,000 emails on New Year’s Eve

The State Department on Thursday released over 3,000 of Hillary Clinton’s personal emails from her time as Secretary of State, marking the last of the major document dumps of the year.

Still, the agency said Thursday that it will fall short of the mandate to release 82 percent of Clinton’s total emails by the end of 2015, blaming the holiday schedule and the sheer number of documents involved.

“We have worked diligently to come as close to the goal as possible, but with the large number of documents involved and the holiday schedule we have not met the goal this month,” the State Department said in a statement. “To narrow that gap, the State Department will make another production of former Secretary Clinton’s email sometime next week.”

The latest batch of 3,105 emails includes 275 documents upgraded to “classified” since they landed in the former Secretary’s personal inbox. That brings the total number of classified docs found in the emails to 1,274. A State Department official told Fox News on Friday that two of those emails were upgraded to “secret,” while most of the others were upgraded to “confidential.”

Still, Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairman Reince Priebus seized upon the news as another reason the 2016 presidential candidate couldn’t be taken at her word.

“With more than 1,250 emails containing classified information now uncovered, Hillary Clinton’s decision to put secrecy over national security by exclusively operating off of a secret email server looks even more reckless,” he said in a statement on Friday.

“When this scandal first broke, Hillary Clinton assured the American people there was no classified material on her unsecure server, a claim which has since been debunked on a monthly basis with each court-ordered release. With an expanded FBI investigation underway and new details emerging about the conflicts of interest her server was designed to conceal, Hillary Clinton has shown she lacks the character and judgement to be president during this critical time for our country.”

The State Department, however, reminded that the classifications were retroactive. “The information we upgraded today was not marked classified at the time the emails were sent,” the official said.

By court order, the State Department is required to release as many of her emails as they can in a single installment on the last weekday of every month. It released over 7,000 on Nov. 30.

The State Department also said in its statement that most of the documents will have incomplete data fields on the FOIA website, citing “an effort to process and post as many documents as possible.” This means that many of the documents will not have full completed fields for “Subject,” “To,” or “From.” The statement says that that data will be added in January.

Clinton has been under fire through much of 2015 about her use of a private, unsecured email server as secretary of state, specifically over the security of her server, and her incomplete retention of her emails. Clinton claims that she has turned over all work-related emails and has only deleted private or personal emails. She also claims that she never sent or received emails marked classified.

The State Department has released installments of her emails every month since May.

The last batch in November, contains 328 emails deemed to have classified information. According to the State Department, that brought the total number with classified information to 999. The emails also covered the tumultuous period before and after the Sept. 11, 2012, Benghazi terror attacks. On the night of the attacks, the communications show Clinton notifying top advisers of confirmation from the Libyans that then-Ambassador Chris Stevens had died.

The final installment is expected just before the Iowa caucuses in February.

Fox News’ Lucas Tomlinson and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

State Department releases over 3,000 emails on New Year’s Eve

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