Ivanka Trump defended her use of a private email account as she was moving into an advisor’s position in her father’s administration, saying that it cannot be compared to the flap over former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s private email server and that “Lock her up!” doesn’t apply to her.
“All of my emails are stored and preserved. There were no deletions,” President Trump’s elder daughter and advisor told ABC News in an interview broadcast Wednesday.
The Washington Post reported this month that Ivanka Trump sent hundreds of emails about government business from a personal email account last year to White House aides, Cabinet members and her assistant, many in violation of public records rules.
“There is no restriction of using personal email,” she said. “In fact, we’re instructed that if we receive an email to our personal account that could relate to government work, you simply just forward it to your government account so it can be archived.”
Clinton used a personal email account linked to a private server at her home in Chappaqua, a New York City suburb, during her time as the top U.S. diplomat under President Obama. The FBI found classified information in some of the emails that were sent or received through her private server.
President Trump harshly criticized Clinton, his 2016 Democratic presidential rival, for her use of the private email server. Trump dubbed her “Crooked Hillary” and repeatedly said, including to her face, that she belonged in jail. At his campaign rallies, chants of “Lock her up!” rang out.
Ivanka Trump was asked by ABC News, “So the idea of ‘Lock her up!’ doesn’t apply to you?”
“No,” she replied.
Referencing her father’s denunciations of Clinton’s private email server, she said, “There’s no equivalency to what my father’s spoken about.”
Clinton deleted thousands of emails that she and her lawyers decided were personal or unrelated to her work as secretary of State before she turned over thousands of other emails to federal investigators. She said she had been unaware of rules against using private email to conduct the public’s business and said she never knowingly emailed classified information.
Republicans and Democrats on Capitol Hill plan to scrutinize Ivanka Trump’s personal email use. The Republican chairmen of Senate and House oversight committees — as well as a top House Democrat who will be wielding a gavel when his party takes power in January — have called on the White House to provide more information about the email account and the nature of her messages.
That would renew Republican-led congressional probes that had languished since last year when reports by Politico revealed that Ivanka Trump’s husband, Jared Kushner, and other White House officials had been using private email for government purposes in possible violation of the Presidential Records Act and other federal record-keeping laws.
On other issues, Ivanka Trump said she is not worried about legal exposure for herself, her father or anyone else in her family with regard to special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s probe into Russian interference in the 2016 elections.