Profile: CA-04

Tom McClintock has been a Republican and a conservative stalwart in California politics on the state level for decades.  Serving in the state legislature, he’s been on the forefront against illegal immigration and a voice for fiscal responsibility.  Now he’s running to replace the Abramoff-scarred John Doolittle (R) in California’s 4th Congressional District.  CA-04 is a heavily Republican district, but McClintock faces a few challenges: Doolittle won only 49% of the vote in 2006 against the same opponent McClintock faces this year (Charlie Brown), McClintock doesn’t have the same history of residence as Brown, and this is a pretty dour electoral landscape for Republicans nationally.  Since McClintock doesn’t have the same associations with scandal as Doolittle, he probably has a better chance against Brown than Doolittle might have, and McClintock’s policy positions are probably more in line with those of CA-04 than Brown’s are.

The interests of the national Republican party would certainly be well served by McClintock’s election.  Not only would his election be a hold on one of California’s few contested seats; he would provide a voice for reform among Republicans on the Hill.  He’s used to being in a fighting minority.  Republicans could use some renewed ideas and policy positions now, and McClintock provides those in abundance.  He’s in support of local control for education, pro-Second Amendment, an advocate of enforcing immigration laws, and a believer in responsible budgets.  A poll in mid-September had him leading Brown, but the national dynamic is changing quickly out there.  More support could help ensure that this long-serving legislator from California brings his talents to the national stage.

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