Tag: Buck McKeon

AD-38: Rep. Buck McKeon Caught Covering His Bases for Himself and California Assembly Candidate Wife Patricia McKeon


Speaker Boehner, Patricia McKeon and Rep. Buck McKeon

As I said in a previous post, this California Assembly race is starting to heat up. The latest is the partial release of a memo by Roll Call that outlines Rep. Buck McKeon’s strategy in deflecting attention away from a revelation of his dealings with Countrywide Financial. The link to the Roll Call Story is here.

When House Armed Services Chairman Buck McKeon (R-Calif.) became ensnared by the Countrywide mortgage scandal last month, his senior staff came together for a strategy session to decide how to throw colleagues, potential challengers and former employees under the bus.

McKeon is one of four Members referred to the House Ethics Committee to discern whether Countrywide provided preferential treatment to influential lawmakers through an exclusive loan program.

McKeon’s communications director drafted a memo — “a recap of current strategy call” — and addressed it to Chief of Staff Bob Cochran, Deputy Chief of Staff Bob Haueter and political consultant Tony Marsh.

The memo included a reference to a California state Assembly race that pits a former McKeon staffer, Scott Wilk, against McKeon’s wife, Patricia. Wilk previously worked as McKeon’s press secretary and later his district director.

According to the memo, McKeon’s strategy should include “thorough background checks into the relationships between Wilk, [Wilk’s political consultant, Jason Cable] Roe, and their recent shady political connections.”

When asked for comment, Wilk replied: “Well, you [have] got to remember this Assembly seat and his new Congressional seat are all in the same area. … Mr. McKeon has been catching some grief from the right.”

OK, so Buck McKeon is a typical POL who doesn’t care who he throws under the bus, as long as his ass is covered and his wife wins a California Assembly seat – funded by Buck’s defense contractor buddies.

Pretty typical POL stuff, right?

Well, this afternoon, Patricia McKeon’s opponent’s (Scott Wilk) wife got into the FLAP.

You see, Vanessa Wilk has sent Rep. Buck McKeon a letter, asking him to apologize about saying all of those nasty things about her husband, Scott.

Here is the letter:

McKeon Letter 02072012

What is interesting is that Congressman Buck McKeon has been working or can you say conspiring to defame his wife’s political opponents. Hope you weren’t spending government time on this endeavor, Buck?

OK, maybe this is understandable in the world of hardball politics( not too ethical, mind you), except Buck himself is up for re-election this year and now has his own scandal with Countrywide on his hands. So, divert that attention, Buck to save your own ass.

Somehow I think there will be more dirty tricks in this race, than either side will want or will care to admit.

Oh yeah, Vanessa, I doubt a POL like Buck will return you hard-earned contributions…


AD-38: Really Patricia? An Anti Patricia McKeon Blog Shut Down and Deleted


This California Assembly race is starting to heat up and the first casualty is a blog entitled Really Patricia? (URL: http://www.patriciamckeonforassembly.com). A link to the Adios post above is here. But, alas Blogger is reporting that the other blog pages have been deleted – at least for now.

The blog was a sarcastic look at Rep. Buck McKeon and the machinations of him and his wife, Patricia in winning the Santa Clarita based 38th Assembly District seat.

Looks like the heat in the political kitchen got a little too hot for this blogger.

I will have more on this race, a little later in the afternoon.


AD-38: Defense Contractor Contributions Help Lock Patricia McKeon in the Room


Speaker Boehner, Patricia McKeon and Rep. Buck McKeon

Shane Goldmacher over at the National Journal has more on the grand plan of Rep. Buck McKeon.

The Assembly race pits Patricia McKeon against her husband’s former district director in a bitter GOP primary. The former aide, Scott Wilk, declined to comment on her fundraising. However, last week he told National Journal Daily: “The congressman has told people in the district that he plans to lock her in the room, raise all of her money, and win it on her name ID.”

The top two election process in the California June Primary Election  may very well lend itself to this strategy. Patricia McKeon’s competitors have NOT been able to match the fundraising prowess as her husband’s defense contractor friends in Washington.

California law bars registered state lobbyists from contributing to candidates for the Legislature. But Beltway lobbyists are free from such restrictions – and the McKeons have taken advantage. Last October, the congressman hosted a fundraiser for his wife at the Capitol Hill Club, a Republican enclave steps from the Capitol and next door to the GOP’s national headquarters. Afterward, numerous federal defense lobbyists opened up their wallets.

John Killeen, a lobbyist for SAIC, a defense contractor that spent $2 million on lobbying last year, contributed $500. Tania Hanna, a lobbyist for Harris, a defense firm that spent $3.3 million on lobbying in 2011, contributed $250. Jeffery Walter, CEO of lobbying firm The Walter Group, contributed $500. Among his firm’s clients is Lockheed Martin. None returned calls for comment. Beau Boulter LLC, a lobbying firm based in Arlington, Va., with defense clients, also contributed $1,500.

So, will the voters in California AD-38 even know that this election is being bought and paid for by Washington defense contractor lobbyists who wish to curry favor with the candidate’s husband?

Several of Patricia McKeon’s contributors are executives at defense firms.

Joseph Kimmit, an executive vice president for Oshkosh, who lives in McLean, Va., contributed $500. Oshkosh, headquartered in Oshkosh, Wis., was the nation’s ninth largest defense contractor in 2010, according to Government Executive, with more than $6 billion in business. Barney Klinger, CEO of Applied Companies in Santa Clarita, Calif., which is in McKeon’s district, contributed $1,000. His firm manufactures military air conditioners, among other items.

Daniel Packard, senior vice president of sales for Revision Military, maker of military sunglasses, contributed the maximum $3,900 to her primary bid. Packard, whose filing indicates he lives in Illinois, said he tries to “stay aware” and support good candidates everywhere.

He has made only one contribution to a federal candidate, $1,500 to Buck McKeon, according to data from the Center for Responsive Politics. “I don’t really discuss who I donate to or why,” he said.

I bet…


AD-38: Defense Contractors PONY UP for Patricia McKeon


Assembly Candidate Patricia McKeon and husband, California Rep. Buck McKeon, Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee

The first campaign reports are out for the California June Primary election. In the 38th Assembly District, Patricia McKeon, the wife of California Congressman Buck McKeon has raised the most money (by far) and that mostly from out of district defense contractors.

Patricia McKeon’s campaign disclosure information can be found here.

She has received contributions from the following defense contractors, who definitely have some skin in this game with Patricia’s husband, who chairs the House Armed Services Committee.

  • Lockheed Martin
  • Boeing
  • General Dynamics
  • Raytheon
  • General Electric
  • General Atomics

Patricia McKeon, who lists her occupation as her husbands campaign treasurer has also loaned her campaign an additional $40,000.

The AD-38 reports show a definite financial edge for McKeon in this race. Her total of almost $127K and $100K cash on hand dwarfs fellow Republican Scott Wilk ($45K) and Democrat Micheal Heddington ($26K).

Here is an excellent spreadsheet of all of the race’s contributions and expenditures.

The question is: Will these obvious payoffs to the Congressman, hurt Patricia McKeon with AD-38 voters?


AD-38: Scott Wilk Vs. Patricia or Is It Rep. Buck McKeon?


Rep. Buck McKeon and Scott Wilk

This California Assembly race REALLY is a FAMILY FEUD. The National Journal has the story.

A sleepy race for a California Legislature seat is turning into a fractious family feud that pits a former top staffer to Buck McKeon, R-Calif., chairman of the powerful House Armed Services Committee, against the congressman’s wife.

“Actually,” said Scott Wilk, McKeon’s district director from 2001 to 2006, “she’s running against me.” He insisted he was in the contest first. 

So it has been in the bitter early going of a Republican primary still five months away but already splintering longtime allies of McKeon, who has served in the House since 1993. The fight has now devolved into the personal.

Wilk said the congressman didn’t call to inform him that Patricia McKeon would challenge him for the California Assembly seat. Instead, the lawmaker dispatched an aide to Wilk’s home at 9 p.m. to break the news, Wilk said. This, after Wilk’s family had donated $6,000 to McKeon’s campaign committee over the last five years.

“I started laughing because honestly that’s a scenario that never crossed my mind,” Wilk said. “Her political acumen stops at seating charts.”

Wilk, 52, is a longtime political staffer who serves on his local community college board, has been chief of staff to two state legislators, and made an aborted run for the Assembly in the mid-1990s. Patricia McKeon, 69, has been a “full-time mother” (of six), president of a local PTA, and a community volunteer, according to a letter she sent to supporters. She’s been married to Buck McKeon for 49 years.

There is little doubt that Scott Wilk is the most qualified candidate in this race. I have known Scott for years, especially well when he worked for California State Senator Ed Davis and then for Assemblywoman Paula Boland.

Rep. Tom McClintock has endorsed Scott and that will carry a lot of weight in the Simi Valley portion of the Assembly District.

Rep. McKeon has already thrown his considerable weight behind his wife’s run. He hosted a fundraiser for her last fall in Washington, blocks from the Capitol.
“His main role has been that of a supportive husband,” said Alissa McCurley, the congressman’s spokeswoman. Patricia McKeon and her campaign declined to comment for this story. Wilk said they are running a purposefully stealthy campaign.

“The congressman has told people in the district that he plans to lock her in the room, raise all of her money, and win it on her name ID,” Wilk said.

But, why would Patricia McKeon, who has NO political experience and whose husband will be in D.C. serving in Congress want to live and work in Sacramento full time?

Looks like to me that Wilk is running for the California Assembly against his former boss, the Congressman. Can you hold two seats at the same time?

Here is a photo of Patricia McKeon at the Tony Strickland for Congress announcement.

Patricia McKeon and former Ventura County Sheriff Bob Brooks