US Rep. Duncan Hunter of California illegally used campaign money to finance romantic flings with lobbyists and congressional aides, spending thousands of dollars on meals, cocktails, and vacations, federal prosecutors say. A government court filing Monday detailed allegations about the married Republican congressman's affairs with five women following an indictment last year charging Hunter and his wife with misspending more than $200,000 in campaign funds on trips and other personal expenses, the AP reports. Margaret Hunter, who served as the six-term congressman's campaign chairwoman, pleaded guilty this month to one count of corruption and agreed to testify against her husband.
In the new motion, prosecutors reconstructed Rep. Hunter's alleged clandestine lifestyle, providing times when he arrived for and left liaisons and listing a range of expenses he represented as campaign-related activity, such as paying for dates with a woman who had become his lover shortly after she started working in his office. He used his campaign treasury for even seemingly incidental purchases—a $7 beer at a hotel bar while on a ski trip with one of the women, and an Uber ride after a liaison with another lobbyist in October 2015. The government's filing suggested that Hunter tapped into campaign funds because he had no other money to finance his romantic relationships. During a weekend ski trip with a lobbyist, his personal bank account had a negative balance and he had been hit with $33 fees six times for overdrawing the account, prosecutors said. (Hunter's campaign blamed his son after $1,300 in campaign funds was spent on video games.)