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?
I hear that Tony Strickland is being mentioned as running for California State Party chairman.
UTimm Herdt has an analysis over at the Ventura County Star and some city by city results base on the unofficial results of votes that have been counted.
The key to winning in any political campaign is for a candidate to maximize his or her base of support while holding down the other in his base. The 26th Congressional District was no exception. An analysis of city-by-city vote results from Tuesday shows that Democrat Julia Brownley did the best job of accomplishing that objective — which is why she defeated Republican Tony Strickland.
(A complete city-by-city breakdown is at the end of this post.)
Brownley really ran up the score in Oxnard, winning that city 66 percent to 34 percent in the final unofficial vote count. That 32-point difference was four points better than the city’s Democratic voter registration advantage of 28 percent, meaning that Brownley solidly held the city’s Democratic base and won a sizeable majority of independents.
Oxnard voters provided Brownley with her entire margin of victory and then some. She carried Oxnard by 12,360 votes; she won districtwide by 7,099.
I will reserve a more complete analysis until final numbers are released by December 7. But, I think Strickland’s losing campaign mirrors that of his mentor Mitt Romney’s losing Presidential one.
There are some basic flaws which the Republican Party will have to correct if they wish to win competitive races.
In a nutshell they are:
- Candidate selection/recruitment
While Strickland may have lost a close race, he is not through politically and with better electoral conditions, I foresee him making a comeback either in the California State Senate or in a re-match in CA-26.
Results Graphic from Around the Capitol
But, this race is NOT over since there are a good number of mail-in ballots that were delivered either on election day or via mail a few days prior. There might be up to 20 per cent of the total ballots cast that have not been counted (40K).
But, Tony Strickland has a steep margin to overcome. It is possible though.
Ventura and Los Angeles Counties must certify their results by December 7.
Stay tuned and if there is any movement in the race, I will be sure to post it up.
Chart Graphic By PoliticalDataInc
Scott Lay over at The Nooner mentioned Paul Mitchell’s report.
The report particularly references CA-26 and SD-27 where Republicans Tony Strickland and Todd Zink are in tightly contested races in districts with competitive (nearly equal) party registrations.
In Ventura County’s two heavily contested races, Republicans ARE turning out to vote by mail. And, turning out like they voted historically in the past two of the three elections.
In CA-26 (Ventura County based Congressional Election) with Tony Strickland vs. Julia Brownley, Republican voters are at a +4% partisan turnout.
In SD-27 (California State Senate which may determine whether Democrats win a 2/3’rds majority of the Senate) with Todd Zink vs. Fran Pavley, Republican voters are at a +4% partisan turnout.
Even, if you consider the other modeling reports, the GOP is plus – at least here in Ventura County.
Could this mean, greater enthusiasm?
I think so, as my local friends and colleagues have expressed an increased desire in casual conversation to vote this election. At least, it means Republicans are not discouraged and are turning out to vote, like they have in the past.
Good news for the Ventura County Republican Party – so far!