On Emails and Polls: How a Verdict Could Affect the Presidential Race

A close-up photo of Hillary Clinton at a podium.

Photo credit: Evan El-Amin / Shutterstock.com

According to a recent CNN poll, Hillary Clinton has received a 7-point bump in the polls since the Democratic National Convention. But will it be enough to win her the presidency? Unrest still exists over the email scandal, affecting both the GOP and the Democratic tactics, despite the fact that an official verdict on the case has been handed down. How likely is that to still get in the way for Clinton and potentially help Trump’s campaign?

Legally, at least, the matter is closed. “We have a verdict we can respect on the outcome of this controversy,” said former U.S. Attorney Kendall Coffey in an interview on Fox Business News.

FBI Director James B. Comey spoke just before the verdict was announced, noting that he would recommend no criminal charges against Clinton for her handling of the emails. He did, however, call her “extremely careless” for using a private email address for confidential information. However, because there was no evidence of intent to transmit or willfully mishandle the emails, Comey felt there was no prosecutable case. Had Clinton still been employed in the government at the time (she left the State Department in 2013), though, Comey suggested that she could have faced disciplinary action.

While the email controversy and its fallout continue, Clinton still came out ahead in the preference polls just after the Democratic National Convention. Clinton and opponent Donald Trump were tied after the Republican National Convention, but the first poll post-DNC found Clinton with 52% approval and Trump with 43% (with a margin of error of ±3.5%). That puts Clinton up 7%.

Trump also received a bump in the polls after the RNC; however, Clinton’s was twice as much as his.

According to CNBC, one of the Democrats’ big goals for their convention was to unite more moderate Clinton supporters and more liberal Bernie Sanders supporters under one umbrella for the upcoming election. If the polls are any indication, they have managed to do just that—at least for now. Clinton’s support among Sanders’s supporters rose from 67% to 73% after the convention.

Still, the email scandal has left many questioning Clinton’s trustworthiness as a political figure, despite the official verdict in the case. The situation could still affect the election outcome.

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