Former Clinton staffer signals he will invoke 5th Amendment in email inquiry
A former aide to Hillary Rodham Clinton has signaled he will refuse to testify about her personal email server when he is called to Capitol Hill later this month, saying he will invoke 5th Amendment protection against self-incrimination.
Bryan Pagliano, who worked as a campaign aide in Clinton’s 2008 presidential bid and later helped her set up a personal computer server at her home in New York after she became secretary of State in 2009, said through his attorney that because of the ongoing FBI inquiry into the matter, he would invoke his constitutional right not to testify before Congress.
The lawyer for Pagliano, who also is a former State Department employee, told the GOP-run House committee investigating the 2012 terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya, that his client was concerned he “might be ensnared” in the widening probes both on Capitol Hill and by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
At issue is whether classified material was sent over the personal server and whether the server was properly protected against potential hacking attacks.
Clinton’s campaign expressed disappointment that Pagliano would not cooperate.
“We have been confident from the beginning that Hillary Clinton’s use of a personal email was allowed and that she did not send or receive anything marked classified, facts confirmed by the State Department and the Inspector General,” her campaign said in an official statement reacting to Pagliano’s decision.
“She has made every effort to answer questions and be as helpful as possible, and has encouraged her aides, current and former, to do the same, including Bryan Pagliano. In fact, two of those aides are due to testify this week, and she is eager to testify in a public hearing in October.”
A campaign aide added that they understood Pagliano’s decision.
“Bryan is an utter professional and a wonderful young man who does not live in the public eye and understandably may not wish to be drawn into a political spectacle,’' the aide said. “So his decision is both understandable and yet also disappointing to us, because we believe he has every reason to be transparent about his IT assistance.”
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