State Department spokesman Elizabeth Trudeau said in a statement to ABC News on Tuesday that the department hires political appointees through a "variety of avenues" and suggested there was nothing unusual about this exchange.
In another email, Band asked Abedin and Mills to connect a Clinton Foundation donor, a Lebanese-Nigerian billionaire, to officials in the State Department, saying the donor is a "key guy there [Lebanon] and to us." Band also suggested that Abedin introduce the donor to former U.S. Ambassador to Lebanon Jeffrey Feltman.
"Neither of these emails involve the secretary or relate to the foundation’s work," the Clinton campaign said in a statement early Wednesday. "They are communications between her aides and the president’s personal aide, and indeed the recommendation was for one of the secretary’s former staffers who was not employed by the foundation."
"State Department officials are regularly in touch with a range of outside individuals and organizations, including nonprofits, NGOs, think tanks and others," Trudeau added in her statement.
State Department officials say these messages are from the same time as a widely known gap in Clinton's emails, before March 18, 2009, which Clinton says was due to technical problems she had with her email and recordkeeping. Some emails from that period have been recovered by State and the FBI, but not all of them have been made public. The State Department says it will do so eventually.
After reviewing Clinton's use of a private email account during her tenure as secretary of state, FBI Director James Comey announced in July his investigators did not find any evidence of criminal wrongdoing.