Wide range of reactions to Congressman Hunter’s fraud charges


After Republican Congress­man Duncan Hunter Jr., 43, and his wife Margaret Hunter, 41, pleaded not guilty to misusing more than $250,000 of campaign funds and falsifying records at their Aug. 23 arraignment, some Alpine residents are hoping for Hunter Jr.’s exoneration while oth­ers are hoping for his prosecution or not following the case at all.

Germain Krebs, 87, is an Alpine resident who said he has not sup­ported Hunter in the past, nor has he been against him.

“He should be prosecuted, why should he be different than any­one else who steals?” Krebs said.

Lori Mitrovich, 79, said she is a Democrat and has never sup­ported Hunter, but is saddened for the Hunters. She said the Hunter family name is familiar to every­one because of Duncan Hunter Sr.’s time in office, in which he served 14 consecutive terms, and Hunter Jr.’s time in office.

“It’s very sad and I feel for the family, but I also feel for the peo­ple who support him,” Mitrovich said. “I think maybe they made some bad choices. They didn’t ap­proach it in the right way even if the funds were completely legal, he’s been in office long enough to know the procedure and how things work.”

Mitrovich also said she agreed with the sentiment that you should not embarrass the family name.

Hunter Jr. was first elected to Congress in 2008, and will be on the ballot for reelection in Novem­ber despite his indictment.

Steve Allison, 72, has lived in Alpine for 19 years and said he has been supporting Duncan Hunter Sr. and Jr. since he moved to Al­pine. He said he voted for some­one else in the June primary but will ultimately support Hunter in November because he feels he is still the best choice for the 50th Congressional District.

“I support a lot of the things that he stands for but I also sup­port the rule of law and if he’s misused funds then he needs to be held accountable,” Allison said.

He added that Donald Trump’s lack of tweeting about Hunter’s indictment makes him less hope­ful that Hunter is innocent, and that he still hopes for Hunter Jr’s exoneration. Amber Hills, 38, said she sup­ported Duncan Hunter Sr. in the past but has not been keeping up with Hunter Jr’s indictment

The Hunters allegedly used more than $250,000 of campaign funds on family vacations, util­ity bills, gas, meals and other items that they would not have been able to otherwise afford from 2010 to 2017.

According to the 47-page in­dictment, they accumulated $37,761 alone in “overdraft” and “insufficient funds” bank fees in their personal bank account.

SurveyUSA released poll data on Monday in which SurveyU­SA interviewed 850 adults from California’s 50th congressional district from Aug. 22 to Aug. 26, after the Hunters’ indictment. Of the 850 people interviewed, 746 were registered voters in California and 539 are likely to vote in the 2018 election for Con­gress.

Despite the allegations against Hunter, SurveyUSA election poll results predict that Hunter Jr. will win against dem­ocratic candidate Ammar Cam­pa-Najjar in November by eight percentage points, with Hunter Jr, receiving 47 percent of votes and Campa-Najjar receiving 39% of votes. The margin of error is plus or minus 5.5 percent.

The Hunters are scheduled to appear in federal court Tuesday, Sept. 4 at 9 a.m.


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