Democrats open investigation into Jared Kushner’s private emails

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A senior Democratic lawmaker has opened an investigation into Jared Kushner’s use of a private email account to conduct US government business.

Congressman Elijah Cummings penned a letter to the president’s son-in-law and senior adviser requesting that he preserve all of his personal emails.

Mr Cummings quoted from the Republican investigation of Hillary Clinton’s email server to justify the request.

“The public has a right to access public records,” Mr Cummings wrote.

“The public has a right to certainty that no classified or sensitive information was placed at risk of compromise,” Mr Cummings wrote, quoting Republican Trey Gowdy’s letter to Mrs Clinton’s legal team on 19 March 2015.

“Your actions in response to the preservation request and the information you provide in response to this letter will help determine the next steps in this investigation,” the Maryland congressman wrote to Mr Kushner, a former real estate investor.

White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders would not commit to releasing the emails at the Monday press briefing, saying: “I’m not going to get ahead of a conversation that hasn’t taken place.”

She added that the use of private emails to conduct government business is “to my knowledge, very limited”.

On Sunday, a lawyer for Mr Kushner confirmed that “fewer than 100 emails from January through August” 100 emails were sent through a private account created by Mr Kushner and his wife, Ivanka Trump.

During his campaign, Donald Trump repeatedly criticised rival Hillary Clinton for using a personal email account while secretary of state, and vowed to imprison her over her handling of classified information.

Federal regulations specify how records related to the president and other government activities should be maintained.

The use of private accounts can put official records beyond the reach of journalists, lawmakers, and others who seek publicly available information.

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