Paul Zunker ordered not to have contact with victim, skip church after party elects new chairman

Categories: Crime, Politics
Paul Zunker.jpg
Paul Zunker: not welcome at church.
Paul Zunker, the former Carver County Republican Chairman, made his first court appearance this morning to face molestation charges.

Zunker was ordered booked and released under the following conditions: That he not have contact with the victim, avoid the family church, turn over his passport, and remain in Minnesota. The judge also ruled that Zunker "may have contact with other children per social services." His next court appearance is scheduled for November 23.

City Pages reported yesterday that Zunker's specific charges -- criminal sexual misconduct with a minor he had a "significant relationship" with -- mean, by statute, that he either lived with his victim or was a blood relative of hers.

Zunker is being represented by Howard Bass, a Burnsville criminal defense attorney. Bass did not respond to phone messages. Zunker has also been hard to reach, canceling phone numbers and deleting most of his web presence.

The Carver County Republican Party met yesterday to elect a replacement for Zunker. Waconia attorney Christine Swee had been filling in as acting chair of the party until yesterday.

Swee told City Pages this afternoon that the party unanimously voted for Steve Nielsen as Zunker's replacement. City Pages asked if the party has a statement about Zunker's sitatuation, and Swee responded that she'd prepared one and that it's "available."

When we asked for it, she said it was up to Nielsen, and hung up the phone.

Previously:


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24 comments
Anonymous
Anonymous

I went to church with Paul, he was always a very sweet guy. I give my condolences to his wife, the victim, and family.

Megan Johnson
Megan Johnson

I went to church with Paul Zunker and I feel really sorry for his wife and the victim. I give my condolences. He was always very friendly.

Adam
Adam

This guy stole computer equipment from my company and refuses to pay for it. He is as crooked as they come. -Adam

BornDemocrat
BornDemocrat

I'll give you a statement.  Paul Zunker's behavior has nothing to do with the Carver County GOP.  We were unaware of it.  Had we been aware of it, there's no way he would have been chair.  Paul's actions are his alone and no one else's.  It's not a reflection of our party, his church, or his employer

Michelle Bachmann
Michelle Bachmann

Isn't it kind of reflection of your party since Republicans have a history of hiding pedophiles?   Mark Foley and Jim Kolbe were both Republican congressmen that sexually harassed underage congressional pages.   The Republican leadership tried to hide the scandal and cover it up.  Only when the media confronted them with facts did they attempt to distance the party from pedophiles.  Rep. Jerry Weller (R-IL) accused a fellow Republican of inappropriate contact with a male page however to this day he has refused to divulge the name of the Republican Congressman that did the harassing.   Obviously protecting the Republican brand is more important that protecting children from pedophiles.   

Anthonasty Ross
Anthonasty Ross

And I'll give you a reply.

Unfortunately for Mr. Zunker and the Carver Co GOP, they belong to a party and an ideology that for the past 30 years has attempted to claim the moral high-ground on nearly every front, even claiming to be the party of "family values" while simultaneously casting stones at progressives and liberals calling them the "do what-ever feels good" party. Yet time and time again, we see that people no matter the party are flawed and will fall short of societies expectations. 

Given these facts, until the GOP gives up this asinine notion that they, and they alone are somehow morally superior to all others, they will be known ONLY as a party of hypocites among the thinking populace. 

BornDemocrat
BornDemocrat

I cannot speak to these other cases.  However this particular case, no one tried to hide anything.  No one in our group knew of these personal failings.  We had no way of knowing.  There was no record of it.  These actions took place BEFORE he was elected chair.  But they were revealed AFTER he was elected.  In fact, until the charges were brought, no one in the GOP had ANY reason to suspect this.  And the moment this came up, we dealt with it, and dealt with it swiftly.  There are plenty of sickos that belong to each party.  Neither party can claim to know the heart and soul of its members as individuals.  We can only take actions when an individuals failings are known.  Did the Democratic party know Anthony Weiner was a whacko?  Do you think he would have been elected to office, or even nominated, if people knew his personal failings?  No party can claim they can magically know what some of their candidates are capable of regarding personal issues.  All any of us can do, is throw them out when we find out.  It would be be nice if we could somehow know ahead of time.  But as each party has seen over its history, it is just not possible to know everything about an individual.

BornDemocrat
BornDemocrat

I have to wonder what you mean by the thinking populace.  The thinking populace, in my mind, clearly understand that party principles and individual actions are always mutual.  When a president sticks a cigar inside an intern, is that a reflection of his party, or of himself?  When a Senator sends pictures of his junk to people, does that represent the party, or of himself?  Are you thinking yet?

BornDemocrat
BornDemocrat

What do you want to know?  Let's have the discussion in this public forum so the nothing is misquoted or taken out of context.

BornDemocrat
BornDemocrat

Like I said, I can't speak to those incidents.  I had no knowledge of what happened.  I only joined ranks last fall, and those events happened outside of our BPOU anyway.  And its not at all hypocritical to have a platform that respects and advances certain values.  Churches do not advocate sin, and yet their people still do wrong, do they not?  You confuse the goals of an organization, with the actions of individuals, and claim hypocrisy.  Does this paper claim to have journalistic integrity?  Does that mean when a reporter molests a child, that its a reflection of the news paper?  Does Minnesota Nice no longer exist, as a value, because one Minnesotan assaulted a little girl?  I'm surprised you "thinking" people can't decern between an organization and an indiviual.  It's pretty sad.

Michelle Bachmann
Michelle Bachmann

You bring up Anthony Weiner which proves you are such a hypocrite.    It's very true both parties will have politicians with moral failings.   The only difference is how a party reacts to allegations.   99% of Democrats demanded Anthony Weiner resign once it was obvious the allegations were true.   I have little sympathy towards your point of view when Republicans constantly hide and protect their sexual perverts.  Republicans hid Mark Foley as long as they could.  Jim Kolbe was protected from his molestation allegations.   David Vitter broke the law when he cheated on his wife despite this Republicans supported and helped David Vitter get reelected.     I would have respect for your point of view if all Republicans weren't pure partisan hacks that only think sex scandals are bad when Democrats do them.   If Republicans really want me to believe they aren't partisan assholes on this issue get David Vitter to quit, otherwise shut up. 

Anthonasty Ross
Anthonasty Ross

Also, that pres and that congressman you mentioned, how many times did they stand up and proclaim themselves to be morally superior? How many times did they preach against premarital sex? How many times did they support "family values"?

p.s. Anonymity=cowardice  

Anthonasty Ross
Anthonasty Ross

I'm not blaming the GOP or the church for his actions. I'm calling them hipocritical. I don't mind having to explain this to you though, It's something we in the thinking community are happy to do for outsiders. No thanx necessary! 

Anthonasty Ross
Anthonasty Ross

If that pres, or that congressman were constantly preaching "traditional judeo-christian values" and shaming others for what they deemed "immoral" behavior, what do you think I'd say about them? Do you really think we'd be having this discussion?

So to clarify, the "thinking populace" would be myself, and others who can clearly see the rampant hypocrisy among GOP members, along with self righteous church members et.al., and by proxy does not refer to you.

BornDemocrat
BornDemocrat

If you really want something cool to investigate....  My doctor told me this morning, that he knew someone on the inside of Dayton's team who claims Mark Dayton paid Tom Horner 4 million to stay in the race as the independant candidate.  Now that would be a scandal worth investigating.  I wish I could get more info on that.  Maybe you can.  Question is, would you even want to.

BornDemocrat
BornDemocrat

I told you all I'm going to tell you about me.  I also explained why.  So since you have no further questions, I guess I can assume I was correct, and that all you are really looking to do is further smear the GOP or it's members.  IF you have a question, besides my name, you should ask it.  If not, no skin off of me.  I've made my point.  Paul has the problem.  We eliminated that problem for us, by getting rid of him.  How he deals with his problem down the road is for him, his victim, and the courts to decide.  For us, we are moving on without him and his filthly problems.

Gregory Pratt
Gregory Pratt

I don't argue with people so cowardly they won't sign their names. Call me.

BornDemocrat
BornDemocrat

I'm not going to give my name.  If I do, you'll likely dig up a picture of me shaking hands to congratulate Paul when he was elected chair or some other photo like you did with Tom Emmer.  If you had some integrity at the onset of this story, I might give you my name.  But since your paper chose to show pictures of Tom Emmer with Paul, you can understand my caution.  I don't want to be linked to this person, like your paper tried to do with Tom Emmer.

BornDemocrat
BornDemocrat

I'm a member of the Carver County BPOU.  I was present for the special election to pick a new chair.  We decided as a group to move on, since Paul's actions had nothing to do with us.  While we were all disgusted with his actions, it really had nothing to do with our organization.  There were motions to discuss this further, but these were voted down.  After the election event was over, we did learn a few more details from some who knew more of the details, all of which you've covered above.  It was at this meeting, that I learned that you were publishing pictures of Paul Zunker with Tom Emmer, and that's what brought me here.  In our local paper, the Chaska Herald, they were at least decent enough to only print a picture of the perp.  My guess, is this has something to do with the acting chair hanging up on you.  It seems you aren't looking for facts, as much as you are looking for dirt.  Look to Paul, and Paul alone for dirt in this matter.  I can assure that's all you will find.  When the allegations were made known to us, was when he resigned.  We immediately booked a special session to replace him, and that's been done.  That's all there is to know on this story.

Gregory Pratt
Gregory Pratt

Well, the first most obvious question: Who are you?

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