Hunter to Media: You “Arrogant Knucklehead”

Jan 7, 2008 3:35pm

ABC News’ Z. Byron Wolf Reports: Congressman Duncan Hunter enticed reporters to a press conference this afternoon by proclaiming he had a "major announcement" about his beleaguered campaign for the Republican presidential nomination.

But he did not — as was implied by "major announcement" — drop out.

The Republican Congressman from California went on a tirade in Manchester, N.H. on Monday about the "knucklehead" corporate media executives, specifically at ABC News and Fox News, who kept him out of debates on Saturday (ABC News/Facebook/WMUR) and Sunday (Fox News) here in New Hampshire. He used the word knucklehead about 15 times.

"What burden have you borne?" he asked. Hunter, who served in the Army during Vietnam and whose son is a Marine, also proclaimed, "how many children have you sent to the theaters of war in Afghanistan and Iraq?"

Hunter complained that while he was barred from the ABC News and Fox News debate, he got 8 percent of the vote at the caucus in Wyoming on January 5th. So while neither Arizona Sen. John McCain nor former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani has any official delegates in the Republican Primary, Hunter does.

"Last time I checked one is more than zero," he said.

Both McCain and Giuliani poll much higher than Hunter nationally, where Hunter barely registers, as well as in primary and early caucus states.

ABC News required candidates taking part in their debate in New Hampshire to register at five percent support in in one of eight scientific polls, or to place 4th in the Iowa caucus in order to participate. This allowed Congressman Ron Paul, R-Tex., to take part in ABC News’ debate, but not in Fox’s "forum," where candidates needed at least 10 percent support in national polling.

Hunter said he is more qualified than any of the other Republican candidates when it comes to foreign policy. Hunter is a former chairman of the House Armed Services Committee. McCain would have chaired the Senate Armed Services Committee in 2007 if Republicans had not lost control of Congress in 2006. Both men are now the ranking members of their respective committees.

"I am not going to let some arrogant knucklehead executive in a glass office 10 stories above a mall in New York City decide the outcome of this election," Hunter said. "That is for the voters of New Hampshire to decide."

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