McClintock attacked by Republican political operative

October 22, 2013 - By Katy Grimes

The two-week federal government shutdown was an interesting public relations move by the White House. The media, predictably, blamed Republicans and the Tea Party.Tom_McClintockImage1-199x300

But it also was curious that veteran GOP operative, political analyst and former legislative aid Tony Quinn penned a scathing story of conservative stalwart Rep. Tom McClintock, R-Elk Grove. McClintock, a 22-year California state legislator, was elected to Congress in 2008.

“It is time for California Republicans to confront the real enemies who are dragging them from defeat to defeat, and this means dealing with the Tea Party extremists in their own ranks,” Quinn wrote in Fox and Hounds.

“No Tea Party congressman is more deserving of defeat than Rep. Tom McClintock (R-Elk Grove) whose 30-year career has been devoted to destroying the sunny, positive conservatism that Ronald Reagan gave us and replacing it with a sour, negative, anti-everything fringy right-wing populism.”

Quinn obviously doesn't like McClintock. He doesn't like many conservatives or Republicans, and has a particular dislike for the Tea Party.

Tony v. Tom

Ever since his days as policy director for the Assembly Republican Caucus in the mid-1980's, Quinn has been taking aim at McClintock, who was the Assembly Republican whip at the time.

Quinn also attacks McClintock personally. “McClintock does vote 'yes' on one thing, his own pension,” Quinn said. “The Sacramento Bee recently reported that McClintock is collecting his legislative pension while a member of Congress.”

“Unlike ex-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sen. Dianne Feinstein and Sen. Barbara Boxer, Tom isn’t independently wealthy,” my colleague John Seiler pointed out in a recent story. “So he has to take a government paycheck to support his family. His paycheck is one of the few cases of my tax money being well spent.”

If Quinn believes that McClintock can be attacked for feeding at the public trough because he receives a legislative pension, he should look at McClintock ranks 419th out of the 435 House members in personal wealth.

Quinn's rich history of skewering McClintock

Quinn has never been shy about his vehement dislike of McClintock. “Tom McClintock may be the single biggest loser in California political history,” Quinn wrote on Fox and Hounds in 2010. McClintock narrowly lost two races for state controller and one for lieutenant governor. He also finished third in the recall election in 2003, behind winner Arnold Schwarzenegger and then Lt. Gov. Cruz Bustamante.

In a recent story on Fox and Hounds, Quinn even accused McClintock of wanting to weaken the country's national security.

Quinn wrote a story on Fox and Hounds in July complaining about newly elected Republican Sen. Andy Vidak's win in the Central Valley, in “Democrats Foolishly Blow an Easy Win.

I remember when McClintock ran for Congress in 2008, Quinn was the first to happily predict a McClintock defeat in the primary. But Quinn was wrong. McClintock won by 14 points, despite being significantly outspent.

“McClintock helped pilot the Ted Cruz kamikaze dive bomber this week by supporting both the government shutdown and default on the debt,” Quinn said.  “A Sacramento area cancer survivor who could not get treatment due to the shutdown delivered 140,000 signatures to McClintock’s office urging he vote for the compromise to reopen the government.  What did McClintock do, he voted 'no' as he always does,” Quinn quipped.

That's correct — McClintock voted “no.” But his vote reflects all the many problems Obamacare is bringing. Here are the DrudgeReport's headlines for today:

CONSUMER REPORTS: 'Stay away'...
FOURNIER: Worse Than We Know...
Busy signal for 'hotline' number provided...
Man Spends 4.5 Hours on Phone But Still Can't Sign Up...
Hannity Gets Through, Operator Says No One Likes It...
WH busted pushing false account of success...
NBA Stars Promote in CA...
CRUZ: 'Nigerian Email Scammers' Running Website...
Zero Enrollments in New York?
Democrats warm to 'delay'...

If McClintock ever manages to surprise supporters on a vote, there likely is a constitutional reason for it. McClintock’s strong civil liberties streak usually attracts a considerable number of Democrats and Independents during election time.

During the government shutdown, on the House floor, McClintock helped push through a measure that would have re-opened the parks, and was joined by 23 House Democrats. I've also written about McClintock's battle to prevent tourist amenities from being removed by environmentalists at Yosemite National Park, which would result in a permanent reduction in tourism in the entire region.

Comparing California Reps

Compared to Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-San Francisco, McClintock receives most of his political contributions from individuals, according to the Open Secrets Center for Responsive Politics. Open Secrets reports in the most recent campaign contribution report, 92 percent of McClintock's contributions are from individual contributors. Political Action Committees contribute 7 percent, and large contributors make up 45 percent of his contributors.

Pelosi receives only 39 percent of her contributions from individuals, 39 percent from political action committees, and 26 percent from large contributors. And her large contributors contribute significantly more than McClintock's.

In the 2013-14 campaign cycle, Pelosi has already received $174,097 from large contributors, in mostly $10,400 chunks. McClintock has received $126,569, in the form of $4,500 and $5,200 contributions.


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  1. Queeg says:

    Sounds like someone has a long time, pre-existing condition hemorrhoid flare or something….

  2. Bill Saracino says:

    Who cares what Tony Quinn says? He has no clue how to win elections. I stopped listening to him in 1984 when he fearlessly predicted that Reagan would have a hard time beating Mondale because of the “gender gap”. He’s been consistently wrong since then. What a waste of electrons for F & H to let him vent his obvious personal animus against McClintock. Really Joel – you’d be better off publishing the front page of the Penny Saver than Quinn.

  3. Dyspeptic says:

    Tony Quinn, Karl Rove, Mitch McConnell, John Boehner, John McCain, Mitt Romney etc., etc., etc. These are the business as usual, “we could win more if we just lose more” sellouts who own the Republican Party apparatus. They are craven political opportunists and empty suits who are more interested in getting re-elected than in fighting for any principle worth having.

    The problem with these establishment Repulsivecans is that when they do win nothing changes, at least not for the better. Can you see any difference between Jerry Brown and Arnold Schwarzenegger? Guys like Quinn, Nathan Fletcher, Mitt Romney etc. just want to be players. They want power, influence and money and they crave the esteem of their opponents and the media elites more than the rank and file of their own party, for whom they have limitless reserves of contempt.

    The sole historical function of these centrist, business-as-usual establishment apparatchiks is to act like a drag parachute or a sea anchor on the relentless growth of the Leviathan Nanny State. Without them we would be a decade further down the road to perdition. But we will surely get there soon enough and when we do they will be quite comfortable with the whole mess which they helped create.

    The establishment of the Republican Party is at war with it’s own base. How politically stupid is that? They should just be done with it and switch to the TweedleDee party where their sentiments, values and attitudes are more accepted. After all, it’s not like this will make a difference in the long run anyway.

  4. Prentiss Davis says:

    No one in public life today is more deserving of our support than Tom McClintock. It’s the faulty reasoning of many of these so called experts that is causing Republicans to loose elections.

  5. Richard Rider says:

    Tony Quinn should make his transformation into a statist Democrat complete — changing parties the way former GOP Assemblyman – turned independent – turned Democrat Nathan Fletcher has done.

    RINO’s such as Quinn pine for the good old days when Republican legislators’ primary role was to get govt to dispense sweetheart contracts and market advantages to cronies while providing massive crop subsidies for multimillionaire farmers and agri-corps.

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