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US Vice President Mike Pence downplays private email storm

Emails obtained by his home state Indianapolis Star newspaper showed that Pence used the private account to discuss issues including 'sensitive matters' and 'homeland security issues'. Photograph: (AFP)

AFP Washington, United States Mar 04, 2017, 12.20 AM (IST)

United States Vice President Mike Pence has denied any wrongdoing after a newspaper report suggested that he had a private email account while he was the governor of Indiana.

Pence denied being a hypocrite for having attacked the 2016 Democrat candidate Hillary Clinton for having private account while she was in White House.

He said there was "no comparison whatsoever" with Clinton as she had a "private server" and "misused classified information".

Emails obtained by his home state Indianapolis Star newspaper showed that Pence used the private account to discuss issues including "sensitive matters" and "homeland security issues."

"I'm very confident we are in full compliance with all of Indiana's laws. And in my service as vice president I will continue that practice," he said.

Indiana law does permit government officials to maintain a private account, but generally does require that messages connected to official business be kept for public information purposes.

Pence's office told the paper that his campaign had taken steps to allow outside counsel to transfer personal emails dealing with public business to the state.

Former Democratic presidential candidate Clinton was dogged throughout her White House campaign by her use of a private email server while secretary of state. 

She has said FBI director James Comey played a part in her campaign loss, claiming that his agency's re-opening of a probe into her email use less than two weeks before the election broke the momentum towards victory. 

(WION with inputs from AFP)

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