It's been 28 days since Congressman Duncan Hunter, who pleaded guilty to conspiracy charge stemming from a campaign fund fraud case, announced he would step down from office. In early December he wrote, "Shortly after the Holidays I will resign from Congress."
We are now three days into the New Year and there is still no word from the Congressman. Experts, and also his challengers, have taken notice.
Dr. Casey Dominguez, a professor of political science at the University of San Diego, pointed to a similar case of resignation: that of former California Representative Katie Hill who stepped down this fall following an ethics investigation over an allegedly inappropriate relationship with a staffer.
Rep. Hill resigned about a week after announcing she intended to do so, according to Dr. Dominguez.
Not only did Hunter not resign Friday, nearly a month after saying he would, his chief of staff said he does not have a specific date in mind.
There are many questions about how Hunter’s pending resignation will affect the primary, and his potential replacements are already speaking out.
Republican candidate Carl DeMaio wrote: “Duncan Hunter is silencing the voice of the voters of the 50th District for a full year in Congress. He should have resigned as soon as he pleaded guilty.”
Democrat challenger Ammar Campa Najjar said, “Addressing the aftermath of the Iran strike was Congress's top priority [Friday]. Duncan Hunter should resign soon, simply because he's been stripped of his voting privileges and is no longer fulfilling the duties of a Congressman.~
Hunter supporters have asked for his office to stay open once he's gone, which is House protocol. In his Hunter’s his existing staff would continue to work for the district under the supervision of the House Office of the Clerk.