Jeb Bush maintained a second, undisclosed email account while governor of Florida, the Associated Press reported Tuesday. The discovery raises new questions about politicians and email policy, even as the presidential prospect attempts to distinguish himself on public transparency.
Bush made waves in December when he released reams of emails from his tenure as governor. But the AP has found in addition to his well-publicized email@example.com email address, Bush received more than 400 emails at firstname.lastname@example.org from 1999 to 2004. Bush left office in 2007.
Though Bush sent no emails from that address, records show the former Sunshine State governor replying to messages in that inbox through his primary address. Most of the emails came in 1999, and tapered off in subsequent years.
The AP investigation found no signs of wrongdoing or impropriety surrounding the additional email account. Bush's spokeswoman Kristy Campbell told the AP the former governor didn't know anything about the address.
The email habits of public servants have recently become a political flashpoint. A New York Times investigation published earlier this month revealed how Hillary Rodham Clinton used a private email address in lieu of a government-issued account while serving as secretary of state. The ensuing controversy has focused negative attention on Clinton, who has responded she broke no rules and will make all appropriate, nonsensitive emails public.
This isn't the first time scrutiny has fallen on the younger Bush brother regarding emails. Records show Bush used his personal address to communicate about national security issues in the wake of the Sept. 11 terror attacks. And records show it took Bush more than seven years to comply with Florida statutes that require governors to provide email records to the state.