Most gallant, most gallant

Duncan Hunter, US congressman, blames wife over $250,000 campaign fraud scandal

He’s an ex-Marine and saw frontline action, so in parliamentary terms he’s the “gallant.” In the other sense, not so much:

A US congressman accused of using $250,000 in campaign donations to fund his own lavish lifestyle appeared to blame his wife for the scandal.

Duncan Hunter and his wife Margaret were charged this week with fraud and illegal use of campaign funds.

They were accused of using election campaign money to take personal trips to London, Hawaii and Italy, pay children’s school fees, and for dental work and theatre tickets

The spending included $600 on an airfare for their pet rabbit, $3,300 on burgers at In-N-Out fast food restaurants, and $11,300 for items at Costco supermarket.

The campaign funds you’ve got left when you retire, yes, those can be spent that way. But still, blaming the wife for all this?

And how does anyone spend $3,300 at In and Out?

7 thoughts on “Most gallant, most gallant”

  1. “When I went away to Iraq in 2003, the first time, I gave her power of attorney. She handled my finances throughout my entire military career and that continued on when I got into Congress.

    “She was also the campaign manager, so whatever she did, that’ll be looked at too, I’m sure, but I didn’t do it.”

    (Sharp intake of breath. Shakes head)
    Military were never the brightest, were they?

  2. “$600 on an airfare for their pet rabbit”: that outclasses our MPs’ scandal, don’t you think? What’s a duck house when you can have a flying coney?

  3. “The campaign funds you’ve got left when you retire, yes, those can be spent that way. ”

    I believe that used to be the US federal campaign law, but that ended a number of years ago (incidentally leading to mass retirements by Congresscritters just before that prohibition went into effect). Today they either tend to stop fundraising as they decide to retire, drawing down their accounts, or donate the funds to other candidates or campaigns. Personal use, even after retirement, is prohibited (though I am sure enforcement is less than perfect).

    At least that is the understanding, confirmed by some quick googling, of this US lawyer who doesn’t specialize in this area.

  4. BTW, I happened to read the Hunter indictment. If even half of that stuff can be proven, he definitely belongs in prison. And I say that:

    (a) Not being sympathetic to the Democratic party.
    (b) Inclined to give defendants the benefit of doubt when dealing with the gray areas in vast messy regulations, like campaign finance.
    (c) Considering much of the US federal campaign laws to be unconstitutional on the basis of the First Amendment and for other reasons.

    But none of that matter with respect to this case. Hunter is the equivalent of a company CEO who knowingly, willingly stole large sums from company coffers for purely personal expenses while demonstrating that he knew what he was doing was illegal by out-and-out lying about what he did.

  5. Dennis the Peasant

    For those of us who have followed Hunter’s career, the only surprise has been that it took this long for him to get nailed.

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