The people in Duncan Hunter's district aren't fooled by his racist campaign.
The Republican’s lead in the 50th Congressional District, a heavily Republican area of southern California, has suddenly evaporated.
The source of Hunter’s re-election woes may be that most local voters think he broke the law and is guilty of stealing $250,000 in campaign funds for personal use, charges Hunter and his wife were indicted for this summer.
According to a new San Diego Union-Tribune poll, 53 percent of people in Hunter’s district assume he is guilty of the charges against him, compared to just 19 percent who are sure he is not. Among independents, 64 percent are convinced Hunter broke the law.
Clearly, most of Hunter’s constituents aren’t buying his far-fetched story that the charges against him are some kind of Department of Justice witch hunt.
The poll also shows that with one week until Election Day, the race is now a statistical tie.
Hunter’s lead over Democrat Ammar Campa-Najjar has shrunk from eight points in August, to three points today, 48-45. The poll’s margin of error is five points.
The race is a rematch from the 2016 campaign when Hunter won the deeply Republican district by 30 points and Campa-Najjar took just 17 percent of the vote.
Today, however, Hunter is viewed favorably by only 26 percent of his constituents, and unfavorably by 49 percent. By comparison, Trump has a 50 percent approval rating in Hunter’s district.
When Hunter’s supporters are asked if they are going to vote for the Republican enthusiastically or with reservation, 54 percent said enthusiastically — compared to the 80 percent of Campa-Najjar supporters who say they’re voting for him enthusiastically.
It’s also possible that voters are turned off by the ugly hate campaign Hunter has waged against Campa-Najjar.
Hunter’s campaign recently released a letter claiming that if Campa-Najjar, who is Christian, were elected to Congress, he would be a threat to national security. The letter baselessly claimed that Campa-Najjar would share military intelligence with Islamic terrorist organizations.
And following a court appearance related to his indictment, Hunter went on a racist rant about “radical Islamist propaganda” and called Muslims “disgusting.”
Hunter occupies one of the safest Republican seats in Congress — but his lawbreaking and racism might just change that.