GOP Representative Duncan Hunter (R-CA) and his wife, Margaret Hunter, were charged with 60 counts of fraud connected to their habit of using campaign funds for personal expenses, but the vaping congressman says they weren't personal expensive. At least not all of them.
According to the latest filings in the case, Hunter's lawyers are not arguing that he didn't spend campaign funds to carry out affairs with at least five women; they're arguing that it was part of the job.
From Buzzfeed News:
California Rep. Duncan Hunter told a court Friday he was actually working when he spent campaign money on weekend getaways, date nights, golf outings, bar tabs, and Uber rides during the affairs.
“Mr. Hunter’s relationships with [the women] often served an overtly political purpose that would not have existed irrespective of his occupation,” Hunter’s lawyers argued in a Friday court filing, contending his relationship with these women “includes a professional aspect.” [...]
Hunter’s lawyers contend the legitimate expenses of buying drinks, charging hotel rooms, and ordering dinner should not be conflated with the fact that he had romantic entanglements with them too. Hunter was simply “mixing business with pleasure,” they said.
I don't know about you, but I've had just about all the Family Values that I can take.
Hunter's argument that he spent campaign funds to carry out affairs in a professional capacity, as if he's some sort of high-rent political gigolo, apparently did not comfort his wife who recently agreed to plead guilty and cooperate with federal prosecutors.
Margaret Hunter is scheduled to testify in court against the congressman.
Hunter's argument that his affairs were professional in nature somehow makes him look worse than he already did, because the women he was literally in bed with were lobbyists and staffers. So, by his own contention, he engaged in affairs with lobbyists to secure political capital or concessions. But that wouldn't explain his affairs with congressional GOP staffers.
I have no doubt that many members of congress carry out affairs with lobbyists and staffers, but most of them are smart enough not to use their own campaign funds for it. And while it may be unethical, having affairs isn't illegal; using campaign funds for it is.