The State Department office tasked with the time-devouring chore of sifting through thousands of Hillary Clinton’s emails needs reinforcements.
In a court filing Tuesday, State said its Freedom of Information Act office is “strained to the limit” amid the “enormous undertaking” of vetting Clinton’s messages for public release and simultaneously dealing with a huge influx of new requests over the past year.
The filing is part of a lawsuit by Vice News reporter Jason Leopold, whose case has begun prying loose Clinton’s messages but is also seeking emails of several of her former top aides.
According to Tuesday's filing, State had nearly 11,000 FOIA requests pending at the end of fiscal year 2014, and since then over 16,500 new requests have poured in.
The ongoing review and release of roughly 30,000 messages that Clinton turned over to the department, which State is releasing in monthly batches under a judge’s order, are consuming a “significant portion” of State’s FOIA processing resources, the filing states.
But help is on the way.
Reuters reported Tuesday night that State hopes to move about 50 workers from elsewhere in the department into the FOIA office to deal with the backlog in public-records requests.