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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew on Tuesday would not say whether he knew that potential White House contender Hillary Clinton had sent him emails from a personal account while she was chief of the State Department. "I don't remember giving it a lot of thought at the time," Lew said at a hearing of the House of Representatives Financial Services Committee, in response to a question from Representative Sean Duffy, a Wisconsin Republican. Lew, who was a senior official at the State Department in 2009 and 2010, when Clinton was secretary of state, added: "It's a long time ago." Lew said that he and Clinton ordinarily communicated by phone and in personal meetings but did occasionally exchange emails. Tuesday's hearing was largely focused on the state of the international financial system. Clinton's failure to use a government email address for official business has sparked a storm of criticism even as she lays the groundwork for an expected 2016 presidential bid. (Reporting by Douwe Miedema; Editing by Leslie Adler)