Jenny Montgomery, an executive committee member of the community group Indivisible Fallbrook that worked to defeat Hunter last year, said she was grateful to hear he would no longer represent the 50th district.
"Indivisible Fallbrook is very happy and we hope that he will finally be held accountable," she said. "As constituents, we have been asking for town halls, we have called him for years, and he has been nonresponsive.
"He has been outwardly disrespectful to his constituents," she added. "He is not the right person to be representing this district."
Political consultant John Dadian said he thinks state Sen. Jones stands to benefit the most from Hunter exiting the 50th District race.
"One big deficiency is he doesn't have money and probably can't raise a lot," said Dadian, who said he is not consulting in the upcoming race. "But he is seen as the local guy. People call him Mr. East County. I think it benefits him a great deal."
Jones did not immediately return calls seeking a reaction to the Hunter announcement.
Dadian also pointed out that the official filing deadline for the campaign is Friday -- and will be extended five days if the incumbent is not a candidate.
"Last time I looked there were 12 people who took papers out," he said.
Some Democrats issued statements in response to Hunter's decision.
"I hope this puts Duncan and his family on a path toward putting this difficult chapter behind them," Rep. Scott Peters of San Diego said. "This will be toughest for his kids and we should all be hoping for the best for them."
Hunter is due to enter his plea in U.S. District Court at 10 a.m. Tuesday.
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