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When God closes a door, he opens a window. California Congressman Duncan Hunter knows this, because he is a Christian who loves Trump and hates gaybortions. For instance, Hunter tried to close the door on a Congressional investigation into his campaign finances by voting to gut the Office of Congressional Ethics in January. But then the FBI the Lord opened a window and raided Hunter's campaign office in Virginia this March. And Jesus kicked out a few more panes of glass when a federal court employee inadvertently posted the FBI warrant online, and the LA Times published the screenshots yesterday. The Lord does work in mysterious ways!

Hunter first found himself in the FEC's crosshairs in early 2016, when his campaign account disclosed $1,200 of spending on the Steam gaming platform. As Roll Call reports,

Hunter's office explained the charges this way:

On Oct. 13, Hunter's then-12 year old son, Duncan III, used his father’s campaign credit card to make $19.83, $5 and $24.90 charges to Steam then about 15 more days later.

After Rep. Hunter saw the charges to Steam later that month, he realized his son was using a campaign card to pay for the gaming service. He contacted the company to cancel the account, but about 50 charges were put on the card between the time the account was closed and Dec. 16.

The campaign then contacted the Federal Elections Commission and the bank, and a fraud alert was put on the card.

UH HUH. So, either Hunter's account was hacked, OR his family was so used to helping themselves to his campaign funds that they racked up $1,200 on video games and tried to hide it by reporting the charges as fraudulent. And we have no way of knowing which one of these it was, but we note that in February of 2017, the FBI was looking for evidence of:

...[A] scheme to defraud First National Bank by making false statements related to video game charges which resulted in the refunding or crediting of charges not properly due from April 4, 2016 to the present in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1334 (bank fraud).

From FBI warrant published in The LA Times

We are also wondering how Hunter's 12-year-old son got the campaign credit card to use for the $49.28 of "real" Steam purchases. Hunter really ought to have a word with his campaign manager Margaret Hunter about that! Maybe tonight he should roll over and say, "Honey, perhaps if we only used the card for legitimate campaign expenses, our three children wouldn't be facing the possibility of BOTH their parents being indicted for bank fraud and violating campaign finance laws."

From FBI warrant published in The LA Times

But we are a not a marriage counselor, so don't go by us.

When the FEC started looking into the Hunter campaign, they found that someone had been using Hunter's campaign credit card A LOT. But as the San Diego Union Tribune reported, it was probably just an honest mistake to charge:

  • $1,650 for private school tuition
  • $1,400 for school lunches
  • $961 at Sea World
  • $1,400 for dental work
  • $229 at Disneyland
  • $6,142 at Costco
  • Another $48,000 for, you know, stuff

Hunter took out a home equity loan to pay back the $60,000 he accidentally stoled from his campaign. But by then, the FBI was already all over him. They executed the warrant on his campaign office on February 27, 2017, and Hunter debuted his "mileage reimbursement" defense to his constituents two weeks later. The Escondido Grapevine describes "Duncan Duane Hunter's Town Hall from Hell":

“Here’s what happened,” Hunter said. “Last year I found out that there were mistaken charges on my campaign and I found out in the report that we come out with every year. As soon as I saw those, I paid back immediately $12,000, then did an internal audit on my campaign finances — an internal audit.

“We then payed back another $50,000,” Hunter continued. “That includes everything. We paid back about 130 percent of what my own internal audit came out with. I announced it prior to the election. We’ve been transparent about the whole thing. These were mistakes that were made by my campaign that I paid back immediately.

Hunter added: “Let me put it this way. I am going to be the only congressman in the last two years who hasn’t taken any mileage reimbursement. (Crowd buzzes.) No, literally, the only congressman in Congress with no mileage reimbursement.

“I would charge my mileage on my card. Instead of charging on my personal credit card, I would charge it on my campaign card when going to campaign events. The campaign finance stuff, I was not watching close enough. I have fixed it now. It’s all straightened out. I’ve taken responsibility for it. I’ve fixed it. End of story.”

See, he really is doing the government a favor by not getting his mileage reimbursed! Which the FBI probably figured out when they seized all this stuff in February.

Gee, maybe Duncan Hunter is in a wee spot of trouble. If and when Congressman Douchebro goes to jail, we'll all have a chuckle. Because that sumbitch deserves it for sure. But in all seriousness, WHO THE HELL INVOLVES THEIR MIDDLE SCHOOLER IN A FEDERAL CRIME? We are just a heathen Jew, but we are pretty sure having your 12-year-old abet you in a felony is Not What Jesus Would Do!

You are bad, Duncan Hunter. And you should feel BAD.

[Roll Call / FBI Warrant via LA Times / San Diego Union Tribune / Escondido Grapevine / Politico / LA Times]

You are good, Wonkers! And you should feel GOOD! And you should click here to fund us, too!

Five Dollar Feminist

Your FDF lives in Baltimore under an assumed identity as an upstanding member of the PTA. Shhh, don't tell anyone she makes swears on the internet!

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The Church of Scientology had some thoughts about Our Robyn's piece, Who Wants To Watch A Creepy White Guy Rap About Scientology? We had some thoughts about their thoughts.

Thanks for writing in, Scientology! As you doubtless realized when you didn't demand we take down our story, but requested it instead, our opinions of your weird cult and that poor young man's rap skills are protected by the First Amendment. (I learned about libel law in college and grad school but also on the job: I was in newspapers so long that I was actually colleagues with Tony Ortega -- about whom you sound quite "venomous" and "biased" -- at the very same newspaper chain you can't believe he defended! Next up, please show your due diligence by talking trash about a woman you didn't know was my mom.)

Also, a lot of your former members say on the record that you kidnap people, and stalk them, and harass them, and sometimes beat them up good, and I request that if so, fucking stop it.

The rest of you click the headline, if you want your OPEN THREAD.

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Monday's Trump-Putin press conference landed on the entire free world like a hot treason-shaped turd, didn't it? Congressional Republicans have been saying mean things about it on Twitter, and even Fox News has been less than 100% supportive! The White House communications department obviously knew it had a crisis on its hands, what with how it's generally considered inappropriate for the leader of the free world to get on all fours in front of the Russian president and wag his tail and slobber with anticipation while he awaits his next marching orders. WOMP WOMP, etc.

So the comms department typed up a thing for the president to read aloud today at the beginning of his meeting with members of Congress, about how he was VERY SORRY he said one word incorrectly during the Putin presser. That's right, only one word of that whole fucking shitshow was wrong. All the rest of his traitor words were exactly what he meant to say.

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