• Buck McKeon,  CA-25,  Lee Rogers,  Patricia 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.

  • Buck McKeon,  CA-25,  Patricia McKeon

    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….

  • CA-26,  Patricia McKeon,  Tony Strickland

    CA-26: Will Republican Voters Game Tony Strickland?

    Screenshot of Patricia McKeon for Assembly mailer featuring California State Senator and CA-26 Congressional candidate Tony Strickland

    So, who to vote for next week in my (26th) Congressional district – especially since the California top two voting system sets up various ways to game the November general election?

    Most Republican voters WILL vote for the Republican candidate Tony Strickland who is the ONLY Republican listed on the ballot. Let’s face it, most voters vote for their party and don’t look at the other candidates.

    But, wait.

    The California top two system this year will send the top two vote getters next Tuesday to the general election in November regardless of party affiliation.

    The conventional wisdom says that there are sufficient Republican voters in the CA-26 to easily place Tony Strickland in the top two. But, what if some Republican or conservative independent Tea Party voters, confident of Strickland moving along, decide to vote for either No Party Preference candidate, Ventura County Supervisor Linda Parks or Democratic Assemblywoman Julia Brownley.

    This will, of course, dilute Strickland’s vote total, but will set him up with either the best candidate to beat or not.

    Game on…..

    I am not happy with Tony Strickland endorsing the unethical, Republican tools, Buck and Patricia McKeon. They are an embarrassment to the GOP.

    I mean, Tony is an acceptable Republican and conservative candidate, but he is NO Tom McClintock. He can represent my views better than Julia Brownley or Linda Parks, but when Speaker Boehner or Leader McCarthy come calling, he will switch his vote in a minute for the campaign cash. I cannot say the same for my current Congressman Elton Gallegly who is retiring.

    What to do?

    Vote for Linda Parks, who I think has a REAL chance to beat Tony Strickland with grass roots populism, or vote for Julia Brownley who will bring plenty of Democratic campaign cash to run major negative ads against Strickland.

    If Parks wins one of the top two spots, will she have sufficient resources to run a general election campaign against Strickland? Probably enough and the Democrats or an independent-minded billionaire or two might sweeten the pot – perhaps.

    If Brownley wins, she could beat Strickland in November. But, the Congressional District will remain a registration neutral battleground and Strickland or another Republican would certainly run against her in two years. The GOP might get a better Republican.

    All I know is that Tony Strickland’s endorsement of Patricia McKeon in AD-48 has cost him this conservative, Republicans vote next week.

    Who will I vote for to best game the system?

    I will let you know…..

  • Buck McKeon,  CA-25,  Patricia 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.

  • Buck McKeon,  CA-25,  Patricia McKeon

    CA-25: The Heat is On Rep Buck McKeon Over Defense Contractor Contributions

    Rep. Buck McKeon and his wife, Patricia, a candidate for California Assembly

    There is another expose out today linking Santa Clarita Valley Republican Congressman Buck McKeon, his wife Patricia McKeon who is a candidate for the California Assembly and the defense industry.

    In past years, it has not been surprising that the chairmen of the House of Representatives of the Armed Services Committee have taken many large campaign contributions from defense contractors. It has happened through many sessions of Congress and included both Republican and Democratic chairmen. So, an article on the current chairman of the Armed Services Committee taking campaign contributions from defense contractors would seem to be an obvious and redundant read.

    However, Chairman Howard “Buck” McKeon (R-California) has taken self-dealing to new heights and is having those same contractors contribute to his wife’s campaign for the California legislature. The explanations from his wife’s campaign flack and the contractors would be funny if it weren’t so brazen.

    Read it all.

    Looks to me that my Congressman Elton Gallegly should have run against Buck McKeon to at least clear the GOP Field and preserve this seat for the GOP.

    I am wondering what candidates will come out of the woodwork by the end of filing tomorrow at 5 PM. I suspect there will be a few to challenge the House Armed Services Chairman McKeon who seems to have an extreme ethics problem.

    I don’t think his wife’s candidacy for the California Assembly will help him much. I am covering that race at Flap’s California Blog.

    Stay tuned…..

    Enter Patricia McKeon, Buck’s wife. She has been his campaign treasurer for years and is one of the highest-paid Congressional wives. She is 70 years old and touts her role as a mother of six and a grandmother of 31. She proudly lists her background as head of the PTA and involvement in the Boy Scouts. She now has declared her candidacy for the 38th District of the California Assembly. She said that she was inspired to run after being outraged that Los Angeles plans to tax a 10-cent charge on plastic grocery bags.

    Well it turns out that many of our major defense contractors are also outraged over this tax on plastic bags and/or other regulations that might be rattling around the California State Assembly. These major companies have given this first-time candidate around 45 percent of her campaign money so far.

  • Angelo Mozilo,  Buck McKeon,  CA-25,  Countrywide Financial,  Elton Gallegly,  Patricia McKeon

    CA-25: Was Rep. Buck McKeon’s Sweet Deal With Countrywide Financial a Bribe?

    Last Friday at the California Republican Party’s spring convention in Burlingame, CA, Republic Report caught up with Congressman Darrell Issa (R-CA), who has been leading the investigation into the massive Countrywide bribery scandal.

    You remember the Flap and Rep. Darrel Issa’s involvement.

    A leak to the media that identified three Republicans who are being investigated by the House Ethics Committee has lawmakers and staffers wondering who the source is, and his or her motive.

    There are many theories on who, over a four-day period, forked over the names of GOP Reps. Pete Sessions (Texas), Buck McKeon (Calif.) and Elton Gallegly (Calif.) to media outlets in reference to an ongoing investigation into VIP loans given to lawmakers by Countrywide.

    The leaks stunned the three legislators, who have all denied accepting special rates on the loans in exchange for political favors.

    Some are pointing the finger at House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) for releasing the publicly sensitive information, though his office is pushing back at that notion.

    And, you remember the details of the sweetheart deal Rep. Buck McKeon received which I covered here.

    Four years after Countrywide Financial became a symbol of the mortgage meltdown, the company and its questionable dealings have become a potent political issue in the Santa Clarita congressional district held by Republican Howard “Buck” McKeon.

    Congressional investigators allege that McKeon and Rep. Elton Gallegly, a Republican colleague whose neighboring district includes much of Ventura County, got cut-rate home loans under a Countrywide VIP program known as “Friends of Angelo,” named for the now-defunct Calabasas lender’s former chief executive, Angelo Mozilo.

    McKeon received a $315,000 mortgage refinance in 1998 as his family-owned business, Howard & Phil’s Western Wear, was going through a Chapter 11 bankruptcy, according to documents reviewed by The Times. McKeon was no longer involved in the daily operation of the business after his 1992 election to Congress, but he had retained a stake in it. He saw his income plummet in the years before refinancing his Stevenson Ranch home, financial disclosures and bankruptcy filings show.

    In spite of that, McKeon received a favorable rate and wasn’t required to produce documentation proving he could repay the mortgage — terms ordered by Mozilo himself, according to documents subpoenaed for a House inquiry.

    The McKeons bought the Stevenson Ranch property, a foreclosed home, in August 1997 for $261,000, putting down 10% and getting a loan of $234,900, property records show. In January 1998, they took out a home equity loan of $31,500 through Valencia National Bank, where McKeon had previously sat on the board.

    That October, Countrywide approved the $315,000 refinance loan. The loan paid off McKeon’s original mortgage loan and the home equity loan and gave him $46,894 in cash.

    Five months later, the couple took out another home equity loan through Valencia, in the amount of $30,000.

    Clearly, there was an attempt by Countrywide Financial to influence Rep Buck McKeon and the others. But, why is Rep. Issa refusing to call it a bribe?

    Why, because, silly, they are Republicans and they were caught with their hand in the cookie jar.

    As I pointed out yesterday, this involvement of Rep Buck McKeon and his California Assembly candidate wife, Patricia McKeon in the Friends of Angelo Mozilo, Countrywide Financial scandal will be used in both McKeon’s upcoming campaigns.