Rep. Duncan Hunter was once considered a young, hip congressman from California who had the courage to blow huge clouds of vapor across the Assembly floor during a hearing regarding vaping on airplanes. But after endorsing Donald Trump and fighting off accusations of spending campaign funds on everything from Steam Game videos to school tuition, The Vaping Congressman is taking a huge hit in the polls. Or is he?
(Courtesy of AP Press)
Just last week, the FEC alleged that Hunter spent about $1,302 on a popular website called Steam Game, and the agency immediately called for a thorough investigation. But Hunter was not easily threatened. In fact, he has made quite a name for himself as both a pro-vaping advocate and a pro-gaming enthusiast. In 2013, Rep. Hunter wrote an article for Politico Magazine targeting poor parenting practices rather than video games as a contributing factor to the then-recent school shootings in Newtown, Connecticut. On February 9, 2016, the video of him vaping at a California congressional hearing went viral within hours.
Who is the real steam gamer in the family?
According to a spokesperson for the U.S. Representative, Joe Kasper, the $1,302 expense was largely the result of an oversight by Hunter’s teenage son. Apparently, the young lad simply used the wrong credit card of his father. Rep. Hunter even caught the discrepancy and noted the accidental charge on his congressional expense report as a “personal expense” that would eventually be paid back. Had it not been for this honest notation, the FEC might never have given the transaction a second thought.
But the story gets curiouser and curiouser. Hunter was so confident that the mishap would essentially blow over that he departed for Israel for a fact-finding mission. He was forced to come back early after the FEC discovered another series of unwarranted credit card expenses.
- $1,424 for over 60 transactions of Steam Game videos, far more than the single transation initially reported by Hunter.
- $1,650 for school tuition to Christian Unified Schools
- $1,137 for family dental expenses
- $1,128 for vacation and travel expenses
Is The Vaping Congressman trying to pull the wool over our eyes by attempting to use campaign funds for personal gain? Or is he simply the victim of a really bad bookkeeping system? The FEC and many of his California voters are demanding immediate repayment of the missing monies. According to Hunter, he's more than happy to pay the missing $5,339 just to get this news story behind him.