Hillary Clinton called the private email scandal that dogged her presidential campaign the "biggest nothing burger ever" on Wednesday, saying it was covered by one major news outlet like "Pearl Harbor."
"The overriding issue that affected the election that I had any control over … was the way that the use of my email account was turned into the biggest scandal since Lord knows when," she said at Code Conference 2017.
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Clinton is writing a book about the election, and she said the consensus about the email saga was that it was "the biggest nothing burger ever."
"It was a mistake. I've said it was a mistake," she said. "Obviously, if I could turn the clock back, I wouldn't have done it in the first place, but the way that it was used was very damaging."
Clinton said the scandal was exploited politically and that it was "maddening."
She noted that the New York Times covered the email story like "Pearl Harbor" initially, but it later endorsed her and minimized the saga as a "help desk issue."
Clinton has done a series of postmortem interviews about her election loss, pointing to numerous factors that contributed to her loss like then-FBI Director James Comey's letter about her email investigation in October, Russian meddling, and unfair coverage of her email scandal.
Clinton failed to put the issue to bed despite it coming to light in March of 2015, one month before she announced her presidential bid. She made a series of false comments about her decision to use the private server at the State Department and whether she passed classified information through it.
Comey said last July that Clinton was "extremely careless" with classified information.
Polls repeatedly showed Clinton was viewed as dishonest and not trustworthy by a majority of voters throughout the campaign, much of that stemming from her email scandal.