Pombozastan political update

Cardoza can afford to campaign
Cardoza is a leader among the Blue Dogs, House Democrats who have staked out centrist positions on issues such as the budget. He will be spending time this fall campaigning for his fellow Blue Dogs; in part, because he can afford to. -- Modesto Bee, Sept. 25, 2006

Pombozastan, the sourthern tier, the 18th Congressional District

Dennis Cardoza, the "bipartisan" congressman from Merced who represents only the most special-special interests in his district,is taking off on a tour of Blue Dog Country, in the other land o' cotton.

However, all the subdized cotton land in the 18th CD, the San Joaquin Valley is not a Southern state.

Pombozastan, the northern tier, the 11th Congressional District

So much for Cardoza's "aggressive cooperation" with the northern tier of Pombozastan, held by Rep. RichPAC Pombo, Whale Slayer-Tracy. Pombo appears to be in a fight for his political life without any evident public support from Cardoza, his bipartisan buddy through repeated efforts to wreck the Endangered Species Act and the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge.

But the speculation that these boys do anything in public would be naive. They like to do their aggressive cooperating in back rooms with very special interests.

Meanwhile, the president is rushing to old RichPAC's aid, having paid a visit to the Democrats' other top Republican target in California, Rep. John "Build-the-Auburn-Dam" Doolittle, the Roseville developers' personal envoy to the US Congress.

Bill Hatch

Oct. 2, 2006

Stockton Record
S.J. County prepares for Bush visit...Ellen Thompson
Stockton police for several weeks have devoted hundreds of hours to planning that feat ahead of President Bush's visit Tuesday, his second trip to Stockton. The president is scheduled to attend a $250-a-plate breakfast for Rep. Richard Pombo, R-Tracy, at the Stockton Memorial Civic Auditorium and a fundraising lunch at an El Dorado Hills country club for Rep. John Doolittle, R-Granite Bay. An unprecedented crowd of protesters gathered in Stockton for Bush's first visit. Plans for protesting Bush policies and Pombo's re-election campaign splashed across local left-wing Web sites as soon as news of his visit was announced in mid-September.

San Francisco Chronicle
Political climate in Tracy changes with new voters...Rachel Gordon
Nowhere has the area's growth been more pronounced than in Tracy -- the hometown of Rep. Richard Pombo... The question this election season is whether the large infusion of transplants from the more liberal Bay Area will change the political landscape in Tracy and put Pombo's career at risk. When Pombo first took office 14 years ago, dominating Tracy were farmland, ranches and politics rooted in a deep appreciation for private property rights and a distaste for big government. Today, the big fight at City Hall is between growth advocates and the slow-growth movement. Vast tracts of agricultural land have been paved over for housing developments, malls and new roads, and traffic jams in town during the morning and evening commute hours clog the once-quiet streets. Nonpartisan political odds-makers who track congressional contests, such as the Cook Political Report, say Pombo probably will be re-elected. Agricultural concerns are no longer at the top of the political agenda in the district. Pombo is vulnerable this election cycle, given the tough test Republicans face nationwide...

Oct. 1, 2006

Stockton Record
Pombo's race is state's toughest...Hank Shaw
SACRAMENTO - Rep. Richard Pombo is in the race of his life. A flurry of spending by national Republicans, Pombo's senior position in the House GOP leadership and his status as bogeyman for the nation's environmental movement are making the race for the 11th District the most competitive in California. Money fuels advertising. As of Wednesday, the National Republican Congressional Committee had spent $386,000 on polling, fliers and phone banking for Pombo. Only four candidates in the nation have received more help from the group, federal records show. On McNerney's side, a constellation of environmental groups are mailing fliers, phoning voters and providing ground support for the Pleasanton wind energy consultant. Democratic polls consistently show Pombo in the low 40s in approval ratings, and while the Republicans aren't sharing their surveys, they continue to pour cash into the district.

Sept. 30, 2006

Tracy Press
Give Pombo his due...Our Voice
Rep. Richard Pombo has taken criticism for doing nothing about Gulf of Mexico oil royalty issues, but the facts speak in Pombo's defense. Democrats need a wedge issue to drive 11th District voters away from the powerful incumbent Republican and to the Democratic challenger. It became a two-day media tale: the first, claiming Pombo was in the pockets of Big Oil; and the second, Pombo replying that he did begin such an inquiry in mid-Februrary that led to a remedy. What the Democrats are reluctant to admit is President Bill Clinton’s Interior Department was the “sweetheart” when it forgot to affix royalties to these 1998-99 contracts. After Pombo read The New York Times’ Valentine’s Day story on the shortfall, he began an inquiry the next morning. On June 29, a bipartisan majority of the House OK’d the changes. Yet, three months later, Miller & Company accused Pombo of not doing anything. Pombo did something, and kept the government out of court.

Washington Post
Energy Bills don't reach finish line in Congress...Steven Mufson
When oil prices punched through $75 a barrel and gasoline topped $3 a gallon five months ago, members of Congress offered a raft of proposals, ranging from more U.S. drilling to windfall profits taxes to antitrust investigations. They railed against oil executives' pay packages, and some called for higher gasoline mileage standards. Five months later, long after "Energy Week" came and went in the House of Representatives, Congress is heading home without adopting any significant legislation on energy. House negotiators, led by Resources Committee Chairman Richard Pombo (R-Calif.), held out for offshore drilling outside the Gulf of Mexico, while Senate leaders bluntly declared that they could not muster enough votes for that. "He keeps asking us to do something that is politically impossible for us to do," Sen. Mary L. Landrieu (D-La.) said during the week. She played a key role in forging a compromise in the Senate, and her state stands to gain hundreds of millions of dollars of royalties from new drilling in the Gulf of Mexico. "I frankly wish there were more support for drilling off the Atlantic and Pacific coasts," she said, "but the political reality is that there is not. Period. The end." House leaders said that the Senate version, which would have opened up 8.3 million acres in Gulf of Mexico federal lease 181 and adjacent deeper water to the south, didn't go far enough. But talks broke down in the end over maps of the offshore state boundaries in what are now federal waters.

Sept. 29, 2006

Tracy Press
A Tracy Press report listed Jerry McNerney's out-of-state donors, but omitted Rep. Richard Pombo's out-of-state supporters, like oil companies...Chris Gilbert, Berkeley...Your Voice
John Upton presents incomplete reporting of the Richard Pombo/Jerry McNerney race in Wednesday’s story, “11th District race tops $5.5.”... he neglects to mention any that have contributed to Pombo, such as Chevron Corp., Exxon Mobil, the National Mining Association and various Indian tribes... he neglects to mention what Pombo is being hammered with: charges of corruption, voting to privatize Social Security and generally not adequately serving the 11th District.

Bush to scratch backs of loyal congressmen...John C. Chendo, Stockton...Your Voice...9-28-06
President Bush could be thanking our troops or supporting them by figuring out a new strategy for the war on terror; instead he's busy patting the backs of congressmen who've never even come close to military service. He is taking precious time out from fighting his global war in Iraq to fight in Northern California for four Republican incumbents in Congress: Reps. Richard Pombo, John Doolittle, Wally Herger and Dan Lungren. They are all politicians for more than a decade with close ties to multinational lobbyists. All four supported Bush’s veto of stem cell research...supported the president’s privatization of Social Security...supported spending money to attack Iraq...and support taking our soldiers into war by lowering federal taxes on our wealthiest corporations... All four have yet to debate their opponents for Congress in the fall election. You can support our troops by voting for our troops this Nov. 7. Vote against the multinational corporations that are price-gouging with Americans’ tax money on no-bid contracts.

San Francisco Chronicle
Races heating up for 2 GOP incumbents...Rachel Gordon
Republican Reps. Richard Pombo of Tracy and John Doolittle of Rocklin are preparing for President Bush's visit to California next week to generate campaign cash for their re-election bids... Democratic activists are urging the party faithful in the Bay Area to head to San Joaquin County and the Sacramento Valley to help unseat the incumbents. Democrats are hoping to capitalize on the anti-incumbent mood that polls have shown is bubbling nationally and could unhinge the GOP's leadership lock on Congress in the Nov. 7 election. ...the National Republican Congressional Committee has spent nearly $400,000 on the Pombo-McNerney race, and the GOP's top fund-raiser, Bush, is being brought in to help. Bush is scheduled to appear Tuesday at a breakfast fundraiser for Pombo in Stockton, where the cost to attend will range from $250 to $2,000, and at a $2,000-a-head fundraiser for Doolittle in El Dorado Hills in the Gold Country in the afternoon. Vice President Dick Cheney made a similar pilgrimage on behalf of the candidates before the June primary.

Sept. 28, 2006

Tracy Press
Million-dollar men march...John Upton...9-27-06
11th Congressional District has generated more than $5.5 million in total campaign contributions, and the dollars keep rolling in...
campaigning and a fundraiser with the president still to come, the mid-term campaign season has already seen more than $5.5 million pumped into supporting and unseating Rep. Richard Pombo, R-Tracy. “It’s above average - control of the House is really hotly contested this year, and Pombo is one of the more vulnerable incumbents in the sense that he has these links to Tom DeLay and Jack Ambramoff,” said University of California, Berkeley, assistant professor of political science David Karol. Carl Fogliani accused anonymous donors outside the district of trying to sully Pombo’s reputation with local voters. Pombo needed to spend a lot of money to offset the money being spent against him and to correct “half-truths and innuendo.” McNerney and Pombo will share the stage just once before the Nov. 7 election - the Tracy Press Forum will begin at 7 p.m. Oct. 5 at Poet Christian School.

Sept. 27, 2006

Environment and Energy Daily
Campaign 2006: National GOP pouring funds into Pombo contest...Alex Kaplun...9-26-06...Must sign in to access article.
National Republicans appear increasingly nervous about House Resources Committee Chairman Richard Pombo's (R-Calif.) prospects for re-election, pouring hundreds of thousands of dollars into a contest that had been viewed as an extreme long-shot for the Democrats.

Sept. 26, 2006

Modesto Bee
18th District race drawing little attention ...Michael Doyle, Bee Washington Bureau and Ken CArlson, Bee Staff Writer
WASHINGTON — Dennis Cardoza ran his first congressional race under a white-hot media spotlight. Four years later, the national media is long gone. It's nothing personal. It's just that San Joaquin Valley politics have returned to normal, after Cardoza's dispatching of Rep. Gary Condit in a 2002 primary... Now Cardoza is thecomfortable incumbent, a Merced Democrat seeking election to his third House term. Cardoza said, when asked how he's campaigning this year..."I typically run the same no matter what." He is now facing political novice John Kanno, an electrical engineer who works in Stockton. "I believe that it is time the 18th District had representation that is more concerned about what's important to the Central Valley than what's important to Washington, D.C., liberals and special interests," Kanno said this week. Cardoza is a leader among the Blue Dogs, House Democrats who have staked out centrist positions... The veteran politician had $269,613 stashed away in his campaign treasury as of June 30. Kanno reported having $70,132 in available campaign cash. The 18th Congressional District reflects the aftermath of the 2002 election, when Democratic mapmakers were shaping the district after Condit's political unraveling.
Cardoza can afford to campaign
Cardoza is a leader among the Blue Dogs, House Democrats who have staked out centrist positions on issues such as the budget. He will be spending time this fall campaigning for his fellow Blue Dogs; in part, because he can afford to.

Tracy Press
Pombo hiding out...Lee Miller, Stockton...Your Voice
Congressman Richard Pombo, R-Tracy, who was once in favor of a three-term limit for members of Congress, has been safely hiding out in the gerrymandered 11th District for seven terms, where he has become arrogant about issues that matter to the people. His votes are for his special interests, not ours...constituents who fund him are: big oil, oil drillers, developers and lobbyists like Jack Abramoff. I Googled Pombo and corruption and 155,000 hits come up. Votes for the people are hard to find in Pombo’s record.

Sept. 25, 2006

Modesto Bee
GOP takes no chances in Pombo's House run...Ben van der Meer
Cheney has visited, and Bush plans to, California's 11th Congressional District this year for Rep. Richard Pombo, suggesting a closer-than-normal election for the seven-term incumbent. To keep the seat safe - and also keep the House of Representatives in Republican control - Pombo's party is bringing out big guns to raise money and keep the Tracy resident's profile high, Bruce Cain said. Pombo's Democratic challenger is Pleasanton's Jerry McNerney, a renewable energy consultant who lost to Pombo decisively in 2004. "Pombo's not got a great record of delivering for the district," McNerney said. Though Pombo has easily won re-election since he first was elected in 1992, his campaign manager, Carl Fogliani, said this race is not taken for granted.

Sept. 23, 2006

Stockton Record
Oily mess ahead for Pombo...Hank Shaw, Capitol Bureau Chief
East Bay Rep. George Miller and six other House Democrats are demanding that Pombo hold "immediate" congressional hearings on what may be blooming into a full-fledged scandal at the Interior Department. Pombo says he is concerned about the latest revelations and plans to speak with the department's inspector general, Earl Devaney, before Congress recesses in October. Devaney delivered a withering assessment of a culture at the Interior Department that he says "sustains managerial irresponsibility and a lack of accountability. Topping the department's sins is what appears to be a drafting error that occurred during the last year of the Clinton administration over regulations concerning when oil companies should pay federal taxes. This blunder has cost taxpayers at least $1.3 billion. Interior Department officials said this week they will not try to recoup the loss. Add to this a series of lawsuits filed by former Interior Department auditors that claim top department officials prevented them from pursuing up to $30 million in unpaid taxes from several oil firms operating in the Gulf of Mexico;... Miller, who has been feuding with his neighbor across the Altamont off and on for years, said it should be Pombo's Resources Committee that takes the lead in any investigation. The House Government Reform Committee has been taking the lead.

Sept. 22, 2006

Tracy Press
Pombo-McNerney forum approaches...John Upton
The Tracy Press Forum on Oct. 5 might be the only chance to see Rep. Richard Pombo, R-Tracy, share the stage with his Democratic opponent, Jerry McNerney, before the November election...neither Pombo nor McNerney will choose the questions or topics that will be discussed...they will be given up to five minutes each for opening remarks, followed by about an hour of questions posed by the audience through a Tracy Press panel...forum will start at 7 p.m. at Poet Christian School, 1701 S. Central Ave.