FBI's Clinton Probe Decision Sparks Debate, Cynicism

The FBI decided not to bring criminal charges against Hillary Clinton.

A sampling of local reaction to the FBI’s decision not to bring criminal charges against Hillary Clinton reflects intensely polarized points of view – and a growing sense of distaste about the November election.

"I think the FBI made a mistake, I think she did get involved in illegal practices with her emails,” Mira Mesa resident Rodney Sparks told NBC 7 in an interview downtown on Tuesday.

“It’ll hurt her,” Sparks continued. “But as for costing her the election? I’m not sure she would have been elected anyway.”

Webster resident Tammy Blevins said the FBI’s probe tried her patience: "I just kind of think they've done overkill on it. So I think it's time to drop it."

While Donald Trump’s backers are whipping up political fallout over the FBI's finding that Clinton’s email use was "extremely careless", there’s doubt about long-term impact on her poll numbers.

"Hard-core Hillary Clinton supporters aren't going to care,” predicted Poway resident Sergio Garcia. “They haven't cared about Benghazi or anything else that's happened. They're not going to care now."

Chimed in Garcia’s wife, Deborah: "You know, you do have Hillary supporters who believe Hillary is the right person -- maybe because she's a woman. To me? Not that woman."

However the FBI’s decision plays out, the looming ballot-box matchup of history’s most unpopular presumptive Presidential nominees is becoming something of a turn-off across the political spectrum.

“You're going with Hillary because you're scared of Trump; you're going with Trump because you don't like Hillary,” said Clairemont resident Jim Baxter. “You've got two evils -- pick."

Considering that choice for a moment, Blevins offered this: “Neither one of them are too trustworthy, but for the lesser of two evils, I could not go with Trump.”

Charles LaBella, a retired top Justice Department prosecutor and one-time U.S. Attorney in San Diego, says the FBI probe won't be forgotten any time soon.

“This is going to be a political, judgmental issue, which it really was from the beginning,” LaBella told NBC 7. “And it's going to continue to be a festering sore.”

There are still controversies over Clinton's paid speeches to corporate interests and the financial dealings of her family's charitable foundation.

“I think the problem with this particular candidate is that she tends to play a little close to the line," LaBella said.

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