Mike Pence sent confidential government info via private AOL email, got hacked, possibly by Russia
After Mike Pence spent so much time during the 2016 presidential campaign inaccurately accusing Hillary Clinton of having knowingly sent and received confidential government information via her private email account, it turns Pence is the guilty party. Pence used a private AOL email address for confidential government communications, and he got hacked, with the timeline suggesting he was hacked by Russia – calling into question whether Pence may be compromised.
Here’s what is known for sure: Mike Pence regularly used an America Online email address during his time as Governor of Indiana, and he continued this practice after he became Donald Trump’s running mate. The Indy Star tried to access Pence’s emails under the Freedom of Information Act, and was given copies of some of them. According to the newspaper, Pence received one email from an adviser which included “an update from the FBI regarding the arrests of several men on federal terror-related charges.” But it gets much worse.
The Indy Star says it was told by new Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb’s office that some of Mike Pence’s private AOL emails couldn’t be publicly released because they contained information that was “confidential and too sensitive to release to the public.” These withheld emails must have included information that was even more sensitive than the details of an FBI briefing about terrorists, which was released. And then right around the time that Donald Trump was selecting Mike Pence as his running mate last summer, his AOL got hacked.
The Indy Star report simply says that Pence’s emails were hacked in the “summer” of 2016 and doesn’t offer a more firm date; we’ve asked them for a clarification. This is crucial because Pence became Trump’s running mate during the summer. Considering the larger circumstances of political emails having been hacked by Russia in this election, the most plausible explanation would be that Russia hacked Pence’s emails when he was coming into focus as the running mate, to see if they could find anything to compromise him on.
It’s also crucial to point out that Pence’s hacked emails were never released. This fits with the prevailing theory that Russia hacked the Democrats and released their emails to harm Hillary Clinton, but hacked the Republicans and held onto their emails as blackmail material in case they won. Startlingly, the Indy Star says that after Pence’s AOL emails got hacked, he simply began conducting government business on a second AOL email account. Help us investigate Trump-Russia!
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report