By Caitlin Flynn
The FBI has uncovered emails potentially linked to Hillary Clinton’s time as Secretary of State. The news broke on Friday, Oct. 28 — just 11 days before Election Day — and is the latest development in the story surrounding Clinton’s use of a private server that has dogged her for much of her campaign.
According to The New York Times, during an unrelated investigation into former Congressman Anthony Weiner, the estranged husband of long-time Clinton aide Huma Abedin, FBI Director James Comey wrote a letter to Congress that the FBI was taking steps to review emails that “appear to be pertinent” to the investigation into Clinton’s use of a private email server.
According to CBS News, in a rare press conference on Friday, Clinton commented on Comey’s letter, saying it is “imperative (the FBI) explain this issue whatever it is, without delay.”
In the letter, Comey stated he “cannot predict how long it will take” to conclude the probe into the newly discovered emails, according to Vox.
Clinton said that in the letter, Comey does not specify if the newly discovered emails are significant or not, and that she is confident that the conclusion will be the same as it was in July when the FBI investigation concluded without a recommendation to prosecute Clinton.
With the election next Tuesday, Nov. 8, the story has meant that Clinton, who benefitted from a 5-point lead in a CNN/ORC poll the week before Comey’s letter to Congress, now only has about a 1.6 percent lead,
according to aggregate polling data on realclearpolitics.com, with Republican nominee Donald Trump ahead in other polls.
The investigation that led to the newly discovered emails surrounds Weiner, who has been the subject of multiple sex scandals during his time in the public eye. According to CNN, Weiner, who is under investigation for sending illicit pictures to a 15-year-old girl from North Carolina, allegedly had emails from Clinton’s State account on the laptop he shared with Abedin. Abedin denies knowledge of their existence on the server, according to CBS News.
Trump has used the development to attack his Democratic opponent, equating the probe to Watergate, which brought down former president Richard Nixon.
“It is everybody’s hope that justice, at last, can be delivered,” Trump said, according to CNN. “Earlier today, the FBI, after discovering new emails, is reopening their investigation into Hillary Clinton,” Trump said at a rally in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, according to CNN. Those in attendance chanted, “Lock her up!”
The initial investigation into Clinton’s use of a private server for matters related to the State Department concluded last July with Comey stating that “no reasonable (prosecutor) would bring about charges,” though he continued that Clinton was “extremely careless” in her handling of potentially classified materials, according to the Washington Post.