Hunter, Wife Plead Not Guilty to Charges of Misusing Campaign Funds

Aug 27, 2018, 06:11
Hunter, Wife Plead Not Guilty to Charges of Misusing Campaign Funds

There was some inkling that things were headed this way when Hunter and his wife made their first appearance on the charges in a San Diego courtoom on Thursday.

"The indictment alleges that Congressman Hunter and his wife repeatedly dipped into campaign coffers as if they were personal bank accounts, and falsified FEC campaign finance reports to cover their tracks", said U.S. Atty.

Bail was set at $15,000 for the congressman and at $10,000 for his wife.

Hunter easily finished first in a June primary and established himself as a strong favourite to hold onto California's 50th Congressional District in San Diego and Riverside counties in the November midterm elections.

In response, Hunter said, "I would say that's my socialist Democrat opponent, and that's what socialist Democrat opponents say".

In an interview with The Associated Press in San Diego, Campa-Najjar said he was hopeful of breaking the Hunter family's almost 40-year hold on the district. "This is modern politics and modern media, mixed in with law enforcement that has a political agenda", he said.

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Hunter's father, Duncan Hunter Sr., told KUSI News in San Diego:"This is going to be a long, tough battle".

"People disregard a lot of political issues, but the word "indictment" catches their attention", Claremont McKenna College political scientist Jack Pitney said.

The congressman addressed some of the most stunning claims about him, including that he allegedly bought shorts and was told to write them off as golf balls for Wounded Warriors.

In 2016 Hunter was the second member of Congress to endorse Donald Trump for the White House, saying: "We don't need a policy wonk as president".

Gregory Vega, Hunter's lawyer, said: "The congressman has faced more hard battles than this in Iraq and Afghanistan".

The 60-count indictment details Hunter and his wife's alleged theft from campaign coffers.

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Hunter also said Democrats in the Justice Department were conspiring against him.

Austin Bodger, 21, who works in a feed store, said he intends to vote for Campa-Najjar but acknowledged the candidate faces an uphill fight. In early August, New York Rep. Chris Collins was indicted for insider trading.

Campa-Najjar, who lives in Jamul near the U.S. -Mexico border, says walls are not the answer when 40 percent of those entering the U.S. illegally come by plane or overstay their visas.

"We're excited", Campa-Najjar said in an interview with The Associated Press. This veteran, speaking on the condition of anonymity because of the situation's sensitivity, said that Hunter appreciated being able to swap war stories with others who have served in combat. They spent more than $8,000 from 2010 to 2016 on gas, and in a three-year period, spent $1,000 on Uber rides.

The House Ethics Committee had investigated allegations that Hunter improperly used campaign funds to pay for tens of thousands of dollars in personal expenses.

"She was also the campaign manager, so whatever she did, that'll be looked at too, I'm sure", Hunter said during an appearance on Fox News.

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