The most impactful opinion regarding Hillary Clinton’s State Department email scandal is the opinion of Democratic primary voters. Ultimately, they are the voters who will make or break Hillary’s candidacy, at least in the early primary months. So far, her support had been steady but has dropped notably over the past few weeks among Democrats.

Report from The Week:

Hillary Clinton, the Democrats’ presumed presidential darling of 2016, has lost favor with a chunk of her constituents since news broke that she had used a private email address and server while serving as secretary of state, a new Reuters/Ipsos poll shows.

Support for a President Hillary Clinton dropped 15 percent since the email scandal, and more than a third of Democrats say it hurt her politically. As of last week, only 45 percent of Dems say they want her as their candidate come 2016. [Emphasis added]

Moreover, 46 percent of Democratic respondents said they think there should be an independent review of all of Clinton’s emails to ensure transparency, and 41 percent said they support the Republican congressional committee’s effort to force the former first lady to testify.

The fact that she’s dipped under 50% as the preferred Democratic nominee is quite telling. Certainly other Democratic contenders are looking at the same polls and seeing an opening. Martin O’Malley is investing a lot of time in Iowa, as he has for several years now, where Hillary took a third place finish in 2008. The most overriding issue, I think, for Democrats, is the uncertainty at the present time. The Republicans have a crop of candidates going at it already. Meanwhile, Hillary has been sitting back and not aggressively visiting primary states or putting her campaign in motion.

At first, I had applauded her “take your time” strategy as a smart move. However, I think she underestimated the desires of other Democratic politicians to at least give her a primary fight, if not battle for the nomination itself.