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Supreme Court leaves in place ruling blocking Hillary Clinton deposition over private email server

FILE - In this April 23, 2019, file photo, Hillary Clinton speaks during the TIME 100 Summit, in New York. Clinton is popping up in presidential politics again, and some Democrats are wary even as they praise her role as a senior party leader. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)

 (CNN) — The Supreme Court on Monday left in place a lower court order that blocked the conservative group Judicial Watch from deposing former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton about her use of a private email account in a lawsuit related to the 2012 attack on the US consulate in Benghazi, Libya.

A federal appeals court ruled last August that Clinton cannot be compelled to appear for a deposition in a lawsuit about State Department emails, a ruling that came after a federal judge said earlier in 2020 that the former secretary must appear for a deposition in the case.

The court’s denial on Monday was unsigned.

Judicial Watch had asked to depose Clinton, top aide Cheryl Mills and other former State Department employees in a case seeking public access to the emails from the State Department.

Clinton’s emails were already investigated by Congress, the State Department inspector general and the FBI, and she previously gave written answers in another lawsuit, the appeals court noted last year.

News broke in March 2015 that Clinton used personal email addresses connected to a privately owned server, rather than a government email, during her four years as President Barack Obama’s first-term secretary of state. The email controversy became an issue that hounded Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign.

In 2019, the State Department released details of an investigation saying that there was no “persuasive evidence” of widespread mishandling of classified information in the controversy surrounding Clinton’s use of a private email server.

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