More than half of voters think the FBI should have pursued criminal charges against presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton for sharing confidential information on her private email server while she was secretary of state, a new poll finds.
Fifty-four percent of likely voters disagree with the FBI’s decision to not indict Clinton, according to a July 5 Rasmussen survey.
On July 5, FBI Director James B. Comey announced that the department did find that Clinton sent information over multiple servers and devices that was of a confidential nature while she was secretary of state. Some of the email chains contained Top Secret information and others Secret information.
"Although we did not find clear evidence that Secretary Clinton or her colleagues intended to violate laws governing the handling of classified information, there is evidence that they were extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information," Comey said in the FBI's statement.
"To be clear, this is not to suggest that in similar circumstances, a person who engaged in this activity would face no consequences," he said. "To the contrary, those individuals are often subject to security or administrative sanctions. But that is not what we are deciding now."
Comey concluded that the FBI would not be recommending criminal charges be brought against Clinton.
The Rasmussen survey found that 64 percent of Democrats agreed with Comey’s decision, while 79 percent of Republicans, 63 percent of voters not affiliated with either major political party, and 25 percent of Democrats disagreed.
When asked whether powerful people, such as Clinton, get preferential treatment when they break the law, 81 percent of respondents agreed that is how the system works. Only 10 percent were in disagreement.
Many of those who disagreed with Comey's decision said they believe lower-level individuals who have mishandled classified information have faced prosecution and severe penalties.
As for whether a fair trial would have happened for Clinton if charges were brought against her, only 46 percent of voters thought it would have been possible, with 33 percent believing it would not have occurred.
Rasmussen conducted a survey in January which asked voters whether they thought Clinton broke the law. Sixty-five percent of respondents answered yes, but only 25 percent thought she would be charged with a felony.