Part of a politician’s job is earning the trust of the constituents. This is often a challenge, especially when working against the tactics of the opponent and the zeal of the press. During an election, it seems as if every moment of a politician’s life is under a microscope. That is not always bad since citizens who contribute to political campaigns have a right to know how their candidates are spending the money. Otherwise, there may be investigations into public corruption.
California congressman Duncan Hunter is currently facing these kinds of accusations. Recently, a grand jury handed down an indictment against Hunter and his wife for improper use of campaign funds. The media reported that the congressman and his wife spent over $250,000 in donations for their personal use, including groceries, overseas vacations and private school tuition. The investigation apparently revealed that the couple lived beyond their means and altered the finance records for the campaign to cover their unauthorized spending.
Duncan and his spokespeople believe the indictment is a rush to judgment motivated by the political aspirations of his opponent. Duncan points out that there are several prosecutors on the case who have been active members in past political campaigns for the other party. While the California congressman agreed that he had mistakenly misused some funds that he then repaid, other costs he defends as legitimate campaign expenses.
A conviction for these charges not only means the loss of the election, but it may result in prison sentences for the congressman and/or his wife. Allegations of public corruption can get ugly fast, and those tangled amid accusations would do well to obtain solid legal advice. A skilled and experienced attorney will work to protect one’s rights and reputation.