The State Department asked to halt most of the judges prying into former Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton’s emails, filing papers Thursday proposing that the cases all be combined into one so that a single judge can oversee the government’s searches and released.
Admitting it’s “struggling” under the weight of the problem left by Mrs. Clinton’s decision to use her own email account, the State Department warned it might miss the January deadline for turning over all of her emails — and might not be able to process her former aides’ emails either — unless a single judge takes over and decides what they have to do.
“They are struggling to keep up,” Marsha Edney, a Justice Department lawyer handling the case for the State Department told Judge Reggie B. Walton during a hearing on one of 32 separate cases Thursday.
The administration faces the prospect of each of the 17 judges making demands on how and when they do searches. And any one of them could order the department to go back and try to recover the more than 30,000 emails Mrs. Clinton said she deleted as personal correspondence — a prospect neither the Clinton campaign nor the administration would relish.