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share save 120 16 Is the Handwriting on the Wall for Rep. Buck McKeon?

Patricia and Buck McKeon Is the Handwriting on the Wall for Rep. Buck McKeon?

Rep. Buck McKeon and his wife, Patricia McKeon, a candidate for California Assembly with House Speaker Boehner

When your top Congressional staff leave the state for another staff position, it is a definite tell. Buck McKeon who in November won easy re-election in his Santa Clarita and very GOP registered district is 74 years old.

Bob Haueter, former district director to U.S. Rep. Howard “Buck” McKeon, R-Santa Clarita, has been hired to fill the same position for Blake Farenthold, a second-term GOP congressman in Texas.

Haueter started work Monday in Corpus Christi.

“(Farenthold) is a nice guy, a great guy, and he offered me an opportunity to do what I know,” Hauter said from his district office on Shoreline Drive, looking out over the Gulf of Mexico. “I’m excited to have the opportunity to serve both him and the constituents of (Texas’) 27th congressional district.”

The move comes just days after Haueter’s former boss, McKeon, announced he had hired Farenthold’s chief of staff, Alan Tennille, as his chief of staff in Washington.

The rumor in Ventura County politics is that former California State Senator Tony Strickland who recently lost to Democrat Julia Brownley for a Ventura County based Congressional seat will move into McKeon’s district.

But, former California Assemblyman Cameron Smyth and recently elected Assemblyman Scott Wilk are both said to be looking at the race.

Remember it is top two in California – so, when McKeon retires it will be a two Republican primary and general election.

Who will be the first to throw their hat in the ring?

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share save 120 16 CA 25: FEC Complaint Filed over Buck and Patricia McKeon Mailer

Patricia and Buck McKeon CA 25: FEC Complaint Filed over Buck and Patricia McKeon Mailer

Rep. Buck McKeon and his wife, Patricia McKeon, a candidate for California Assembly with House Speaker Boehner

From the press release:

Dr. Lee Rogers, who is running for Congress in California’s 25th District, filed a complaint and supporting documentation with the Federal Elections Commission today about the use of a Buck McKeon for Congress campaign mailer to benefit his wife and Campaign Treasurer, Patricia McKeon, a State Assembly candidate.

Lee Rogers released the following statement:

“Rep. McKeon violated the law by sending out a campaign mailer warning voters that Paul Strickland – one of Patricia’s opponents in the State Assembly race – is not related to State Senator Tony Strickland. Rep. McKeon is not running against a Strickland and such a clarification is unnecessary for his Congressional campaign. The purpose of this communication was to help Patricia’s Assembly race since Paul Strickland is the fortunate recipient of some name-misidentification. It is improper and the complaint we filed this morning brings that to light.

“Congressman McKeon can’t use funds raised for his federal campaign for communications to benefit his wife’s Assembly run specifically because she is an agent of his campaign committee and the expenditure would not be “independent” as required by campaign finance law.

“Because Patricia McKeon serves as her husband’s Campaign Treasurer, she can’t receive any beneficial communication for her State Assembly race from Buck McKeon for Congress. The two roles have to be completely separate.

“Buck and Patricia McKeon need to play by the same rules as everyone else.”

Dr. Roger’s has a good point, but ethics has never stepped in the way of a McKeon campaign.

The ethics of the entire Team McKeon WILL be an issue going into the November general elections, particularly if Patricia McKeon wins a spot in the top two next Tuesday.

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share save 120 16 CA 25: Buck McKeon and the Family Feud Campaign

Buck McKeon and the Family Feud CA 25: Buck McKeon and the Family Feud Campaign

Rep. Buck McKeon is featured in a Los Angeles KCAL 9 video.

With less than a week to go in the California primary, a powerful Southern California congressman finds himself facing his toughest test in more than a decade.

Political reporter Dave Bryan said Republican Howard “Buck” McKeon has spent much of his campaign deflecting charges, not just from the Democrats, but from his fellow Republicans as well.

The election should be a cakewalk, but by all accounts it might be close.

Says Bryan, charges of nepotism, sweetheart deals, and a nasty war of words with his former district director have made the once-solid-red 25th district anyone’s game.

The 25th district stretches from Simi Valley to Mammoth Mountain. It includes parts of Lancaster, Thousand Oaks, Santa Clarita and Palmdale.

After two decades on Capitol Hill, Santa Clarita’s first Mayor, Congressman Howard “Buck” McKeon is an institution in California’s 25th congressional district. Now he’s risen to become chair of the House Armed Services Committee, one of the most powerful positions in Washington.

McKeon is so well known and liked in this district, he hasn’t had a tough race for Congress since his very first in 1992.

“Some I have had very little competition,” McKeon says, “this one there’s a lot more competition.

In fact this year’s election may be a referendum on McKeon himself. He’s been hounded by reports that he took a sweetheart deal on a mortgate refi in 1998 from Countrywide Financial. He flatly denies the charges, and says he’s not being investigated by the House Ethics committee.

Podiatrist and surgeon Lee Rogers, a Democrat who’s running against McKeon, has a different take on the Countrywide deal..

“People look at that and they say there’s two sets of rules. There’s the rules that they’re operating by and there’s the rules that the rest of us operate by.”

Is McKeon worried his opponent’s damaging words are landing? “We’ll find out next week,” he says, “I don’t believe most people believe what’s being said.”

McKeon’s wife Patricia, who, according to Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington — a campaign watchdog group — made hundreds of thousands of dollars as her husband’s campaign treasurer over the years, is  also running for office this year..

“She’s running for the State Assembly and she’s a hard worker,” says McKeon.

McKeon’s former district director Scott Wilk, doesn’t go along with that and he is her opponent.

They’re calling it the “Family Feud.”

Watch the video report here.

The sorry fact is that Rep. Buck McKeon will win a top two spot in the November general election just on pure political power. Buck has the campaign cash and the organization that far surpasses any of his opponents. Plus, the CA-25 Congressional District is solidly Republican in registration.

But, now the race to watch is his wife’s, Patricia McKeon’s California Assembly one.

It is not so certain that she will be able to win a top two spot in AD-38.

And, if Patricia falls, will the GOP split be so great as to imperil Buck’s campaign in the general election?

Stay tuned….

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share save 120 16 CA 25: Rep Buck McKeon Defends Paying Wife Patricia McKeon for Campaign Work
Patricia and Buck McKeon CA 25: Rep Buck McKeon Defends Paying Wife Patricia McKeon for Campaign Work

Rep. Buck McKeon and his wife, Patricia, a candidate for California Assembly with House Speaker Boehner

You remember the Flap, the hundreds of thousands of dollars paid to his wife and the report that was issued previously.

Now, Rep, Buck McKeon has gone on the record defending the practice of paying his wife, Patricia, for working on his campaign.

McKeon, a Santa Clarita Republican who is the powerful chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, defended the decision to hire his wife.

“My wife, Patricia, has been an essential component of my campaign,” he said in a statement. “She had daily roles as my treasurer and district fundraiser, as she worked an incredible amount of time preparing FEC reports, putting on district fundraisers, and managing my full-time campaign office throughout the years. Her duties have been in total compliance with the rules of both the House Ethics Committee and the Federal Election Commission.”

Patricia McKeon is a Republican candidate for California’s 38th Assembly District, which includes Simi Valley, Santa Clarita and a portion of the San Fernando Valley.

Well, I say B.S. and there is more than an appearance of Buck taking money from the special interests in the defense industry (He is Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee) and lining his own pocket.

Is there any wonder why many consider politicians crooks?

There is no exception here.

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share save 120 16 CA 25: Dante Acosta Agrees to Substitute for Rep Buck McKeon for Lunch Auction
Dante Acosta1 CA 25: Dante Acosta Agrees to Substitute for Rep Buck McKeon for Lunch Auction

If you recall a few weeks ago, Democrat Dr. Lee Rogers purchased a lunch with his Congressional race opponent incumbent Republican Rep. Buck McKeon.

Congressional Candidate Dr. Lee Rogers won an auction for lunch with Representative Howard “Buck” McKeon at the College of the Canyons Silver Spur Celebration Saturday night. The auction took place in the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley. Rogers paid $300 to the College for the lunch donated by McKeon.

“The money goes to the College Foundation, which is a good cause,” said Rogers. “I would like to sit with the Congressman and have a cordial discussion about the challenges that face the communities in the 25th district and the United States.”

The donation offers lunch in Santa Clarita or Washington, DC for the winner and up to three guests. Rogers intends on inviting three members of the local press to observe the lunchtime conversation. Invitations will be extended to The Antelope Valley Press, The Signal, and The Simi Valley Acorn. “There are many serious problems facing the district and it will be good to compare and contrast our views on policy,” Rogers said.

Rogers will reach out to Congressman McKeon this week to set up a date for the “lunch summit.”

I guess there was a problem in scheduling or whatever.

But, never fear another opponent of Rep. Buck McKeon, Republican Dante Acosta has agreed to stand in and take Buck’s place.

From the press release:

Congressional Candidate Dante Acosta has offered to lunch with Democrat Candidate Lee Rogers after Congressman McKeon’s unresponsiveness.

Dr. Rogers won an auction for lunch donated by Rep. Howard “Buck” McKeon at a charity fundraiser to support College of the Canyons, an important local educational institution.

After reading web postings that Dr. Rogers was unable to schedule a date after numerous attempts, Mr. Acosta reached out to Dr. Rogers.

“I know from firsthand experience the difficulty in obtaining a meeting with Congressman McKeon and the how frustrating it can be dealing with his office, so I decided to offer to have lunch with Dr. Rogers myself and he has agreed,” Acosta said. “I also told Dr. Rogers to invite any members of the media he wishes, I’m not afraid to speak in front of the press.”

“It is so important for a representative to be willing to listen to and engage with the community. It is part of their job to work with ALL members of the community, Democrat or Republican to get things done. I have very strong principles and will no doubt have differences with Dr. Rogers but if you are not willing to listen and discuss issues how will you know what you do agree on? I look forward to being able to discuss the important local issues like stopping the Cemex mega-mine and bringing more jobs to the district as well as federal issues such as the war in Afghanistan and the national debt.” Mr. Acosta added.

Mr. Acosta and Dr. Rogers agreed to hold their “Lunch Summit” on March 27th in Santa Clarita and will invite the press to dine with them.

You would think that Rep Buck McKeon who delivered a speech this morning at the Reagan Presidential Library would have agreed to his luncheon obligation today.

I mean, after all, it is for charity.

Oh well!

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