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Politics & Law Series: Expert Comment

Clinton email scandal a "small headache" for presidential campaign

 Professor Inderjeet Parmar downplays long-term damage of email furore

by Ed Grover (Senior Communications Officer)

Inderjeet ParmarThe criticism of Hillary Clinton over her use of a private email account is unlikely to cause severe damage to her presidential campaign, according to City's Professor Inderjeet Parmar.

The academic, an expert in US politics, believes there will be tougher challenges to come in Clinton's bid to become the next president of the United States, if she successfully secures her place as the Democratic Party's candidate for the 2016 election.

Professor Parmar, Head of the Department of International Politics at City, also says the politician is not being threatened by other Democratic alternatives at the present time, so does not expect her to withdraw from the process.

"I doubt this will cause more than a small headache for Hillary Clinton’s campaign," he said. "She’s way ahead of her Democratic rivals and the Republicans have no one who might really challenge her just yet.

“There will be a lot more dirt thrown around before and during 2016 and keeping a private email account seems fairly common among serving officials.

“Many who do not operate such email accounts destroy or take their official papers with them on leaving office, or they classify their papers – as George HW Bush did regarding the Persian Gulf War, of 1990 to 1991 – such that they are still closed to researchers and the public.”

Hillary Clinton has been criticised for using a private email account during her time as Secretary of State instead of a government account, with critics highlighting concerns about transparency and security.

It followed reports that the politician's philanthropic organisation, the Clinton Foundation, accepted millions of dollars from seven foreign governments, again while she was Secretary of State.

As explained by Professor Parmar in an article for The Conversation, the story put the spotlight on the "unrepresentative, unaccountable and generally secretive" nature of the US philanthropy sector.

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City, University of London is an independent member institution of the University of London. Established by Royal Charter in 1836, the University of London consists of 18 independent member institutions with outstanding global reputations and several prestigious central academic bodies and activities.