WASHINGTON, DC– Today Congressman Michael McCaul (R-TX) and Congressman Pete Olson (R-TX) introduced the Taking Responsibility Using Secured Technologies (TRUST) Act of 2016 in the House. This legislation mirrors the legislation introduced in the Senate last week by Senator Cornyn (R-TX) and Senator Gardner (R-CO). This bill would revoke Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s security clearance as well as the security clearances of Secretary Clinton’s colleagues at the State Department who exhibited extreme carelessness in their handling of classified information. Additionally, the TRUST Act expresses the sense of Congress that Secretary Clinton should not have access to classified information again until she earns the legal right to such access.
“FBI Director James Comey stated that Former Secretary of State Clinton was ‘extremely careless’ in her handling of ‘very sensitive, highly classified information.’ In November, the American people will have their opportunity to hold her accountable for the potential damage her actions have done to the security of the United States. Until then, one thing is clear: Hillary Clinton and anyone else who demonstrates extreme carelessness should not have access to classified information,” said Congressman McCaul. “It puts our national security and American lives at risk to trust someone with as disastrous as a track record as hers to properly handle such information. Her actions are grounds for disciplinary action, not a promotion to the most powerful office in the world – and we must send a clear message to all we trust with a security clearance that extreme carelessness will not be tolerated,” McCaul concluded.
Congressman Pete Olson said: “The FBI confirmed that in spite of her claims to the contrary, Hillary Clinton improperly stored and transmitted highly classified information in a reckless manner. While the FBI investigation is now closed and Clinton faces no criminal charges, Congress can act. In its investigation, the FBI could not confirm whether any of the sensitive US classified information was hacked by China, Russia, Iran, North Korea or another outside organization. This information confirms that at a minimum, she cannot be trusted with highly sensitive information,” Olson concluded.
The legislation follows the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) investigation into Secretary Clinton’s use of a personal e-mail system in her capacity as Secretary of State. In an announcement earlier this week, FBI Director James Comey said that “there is evidence that they were extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information” and “none of these e-mails should have been on any kind of unclassified system, but their presence is especially concerning because all of these e-mails were housed on unclassified personal servers not even supported by full-time security staff.” The FBI uncovered several thousand additional emails related to her position, some of which contained classified material, that were not included in the 30,000 emails Clinton handed over to the State Department. Comey concluded the FBI’s findings with “we assess it is possible that hostile actors gained access to Secretary Clinton’s personal e-mail account.”
Comey stated the investigation initially focused on whether classified information was transmitted on Secretary Clinton’s personal e-mail system and evolved to determine if there is evidence that classified information was not properly transmitted or stored on that personal e-mail system and whether there is evidence that the system was hacked by foreign or hostile hackers. While Comey confirmed that classified information was transmitted and stored improperly and the personal e-mail system may have been hacked, he formally recommended that no charges be filed against Secretary Clinton.