Rep. Duncan Hunter Plans to Plead Guilty to Campaign Finance Violations

Posted: Dec 02, 2019 6:01 PM
Rep. Duncan Hunter Plans to Plead Guilty to Campaign Finance Violations

Source: AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File

GOP Congressman Duncan Hunter (CA) plans to plead guilty to campaign finance violations on Tuesday, KUSI-TV reported. Both Hunter and his wife are accused of using $250,000 in campaign contributions for personal expenses for things like groceries and family vacations. 

Hunter's trial was originally schedule for January 22, 2020. 

"As most folks know, my trial was set for January 22nd. That's not going to happen now. Tomorrow, on Tuesday, I'm going to change my plea to guilty," Hunter told KUSI in an exclusive interview. "I think it's important not to have a public trial for three reasons and those three reasons are my kids. I'd be really tough on them. It's hard enough being the kids of a public figure and I think it's time for them to live life outside the spotlight."

Although Hunter didn't say anything about resigning, he did say it has been a privilege to serve in Congress, a hint that a resignation may be coming.

"It's been a privilege to serve in Congress for 11 years, three tours in the Marine Corp, in the wars so I think we've done a lot of great things for this nation," he said. 

Back in June, Hunter's wife, Margaret, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to misuse campaign funds.

"Recommended federal sentencing ranges for this felony charge range from 8 to 14 months, although Hunter's lawyers will argue for a drastically lower term of incarceration, citing his military and public service records," POLITICO reported.

The Hunter family have had a significant role in Republican politics in the Golden State. For decades, both Hunter and his father, Duncan Hunter, Sr., have held the seat for what is now California's 50th Congressional District. 

Since charges were brought against Hunter, multiple people have launched campaigns for his Congressional seat, including former Congressman Darrell Issa, talk radio host Carl DeMaio, State Senator Brian Jones and Democrat Ammar Campa-Najjar.