A former Justice Department attorney doesn't believe Hillary Clinton will face any legal difficulties as a result of Friday's announcement by the FBI.
FBI Director James Comey informed Congress last week that he's reopening the investigation into Clinton's use of a private email server during her tenure as secretary of state. A U.S. official has confirmed that the agency is scouring thousands of newly discovered emails to see if they contain classified material. It is part of a renewed examination of the email practices of Clinton and her aides – and it's far from certain if that review will wrap up by Election Day.
The FBI, which has now obtained a warrant to begin the review, will focus on those emails considered pertinent to its earlier investigation of Clinton's email server.
J. Christian Adams is a former Justice Department attorney who worked in the DOJ Voting Section and is founder of the Election Law Center.
"I don't think it's going to affect Hillary in the long run because in the end, the decision is made by the Justice Department," he points out, "and all signs are that the lawyers at the Justice Department are extremely hostile toward this investigation – and nothing can happen without the Justice Department approving it."
But Adams says the reopening of the investigation might affect the election.
"When you have secret or sensitive State Department emails ending up on a laptop that is shared by a State Department official and a former congressman who is Skyping to a child, that's the sort of people we're dealing with when you deal with the Clintons," he offers. "And that's what you're going to get in the White House."
And while he thinks Americans understand "that is not a favorable situation," he says the impact of Comey's announcement can't be known for certain until polls conducted over the next few days are released.