Will FBI's decision on Clinton emails change voters' minds?

Published: Jul. 5, 2016 at 10:26 PM EDT|Updated: Jul. 6, 2016 at 12:41 AM EDT
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RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Extremely careless and compromising - but not criminal. That's the FBI's ruling on Hillary Clinton's private emails. Now local politicians are weighing in.

The FBI won't recommend an indictment of Hillary Clinton, but is it bad enough to convict her in the eyes of voters? One political expert says both Clinton and Trump are already so disliked, Tuesday's findings probably don't matter.

Dr. Stephen Farnsworth, a Professor of Political Science at the University of Mary Washington said, "Clinton would be the most unpopular major party nominee for president in history - except for Donald Trump, who is actually less liked than she is. So the problem for voters is: how are they going to decide? They don't, in many cases, like either one of these people."

Both parties are sticking by the story lines they've had for the last year of this investigation. Democrats say today's decision by the FBI finally puts an end to the controversy.

"This is what other secretaries do, and she said now, looking at it in retrospect, I might do it differently now," said U.S. Senator Tim Kaine. "I think other Secretaries of State who made similar arrangements would also say that, but I never believed this was going to be something in the criminal realm, or even close to it."

Republicans say this only confirms bad judgment by the former Secretary of State.

"That's reckless. It's reckless for American security, reckless for our country, and so I think we saw from this investigation that there were a lot of poor decisions that were made with information that's vitally important to our country and to our security," said Senator Glen Sturtevant.

The latest NBC News/SurveyMonkey Poll has Clinton gaining distance on Trump, but voters say trust is a problem for both candidates.

"The politicians are actually able to get away with a lot of things that are pretty unsavory," said Dr. Farnsworth. "It goes back to that old saying, that it's not the problem of what's illegal, the problem is: what is actually legal."

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