A week ago, everyone thought it was over.
Hillary Clinton arrogantly told reporters that she wasn’t even bothering to reply to Donald Trump anymore. Reports surfaced that her campaign was now turning its attention to the transition process. It leaked that Joe Biden was at the top of her short list for secretary of state. The media began speculating that Trump was planning to launch a new television network. For those of us who believe that a Hillary Clinton administration could do lasting, irreparable damage to the United States, times were bleak.
But now there is once again a glimmer of hope.
On Friday, FBI Director James Comey dropped a bombshell. In a letter to Congress, Comey revealed that his agents had discovered a trove of new emails relating to their all-but-closed investigation into Hillary’s handling of classified material. As part of a separate investigation into Anthony Weiner’s sexual proclivities, agents found tens of thousands of emails that relate somehow to Hillary and her top aide, Huma Abedin, Weiner’s estranged wife.
Details are scarce, but the news has already had an earthshaking effect on the polls. A new ABC News/Washington Post poll has Hillary leading Trump by only a single point in a four-way race. When the poll was taken last week, Hillary was leading Trump 50 to 38.
In an interview with The Hill, an unnamed Clinton surrogate said the news had turned the campaign upside down.
“I’m livid, actually,” the ally said. “This has turned into malpractice. It’s an unforced error at this point. I have no idea what Comey is up to but the idea this email issue is popping back up again is outrageous. It never should have occurred in the first place. Someone somewhere should have told her no. And they didn’t and now we’re all paying the price.”
Supporters of both Clinton and Trump are pressuring Comey to release more detailed information about the findings, but FBI officials say there’s little chance that will happen before Americans head to the polls.
But maybe it doesn’t matter. Maybe it’s about something bigger than the specific contents of the emails. This is a big fat reminder to all Americans that we have a presidential candidate under perpetual investigation from the FBI. We don’t have to put our stamp of approval on this nonsense. We don’t have to consign ourselves to four years of scandal. We can choose a different path.
And if this poll is accurate, it seems that we may do just that.