California Rep. Tom McClintock stumps in Truckee, talks Lake Tahoe
TRUCKEE, Calif. and#8212; Tom McClintock stood before a crowded town hall Monday, evenly answering sometimes emotional questions about national politics, health care and the economy.
Most questions directed at the Republican congressman from Granite Bay swirled around central themes of the Republic Party’s self re-creation, solutions to a troubled economy and health care reform recently adopted out of Congress.
and#8220;We have a $1.4 trillion deficit and we’re on track for an even worse deficit in the coming year,and#8221; said McClintock, who represents California’s 4th district. and#8220;And we’re already seeing all the inflationary alarm bells ringing. I’m afraid it’s coming, and I’m afraid it’s coming next year.and#8221;
One audience member suggested the Republican Party had been sitting on the sidelines, repeating conservative rhetoric, but not offering meaningful alternatives to Democratic Party proposals.
and#8220;Republicans have come out with well-thought-out health care reform,and#8221; McClintock responded.
The plan would include prepaid refundable tax credits, the ability to shop for insurance across state lines, individuals joining together for group benefits and tort reform, he said, but the problem has been that without the majority, these ideas haven’t gotten serious debate on the congress floor.
He blamed nation’s current view of Republicans on former President George W. Bush and contemporary Republicans for betraying party values.
and#8220;Republicans promised to cut taxes and roll back spending, and did the exact opposite. We broke our promise and#8212; why wouldn’t people want to throw us out of office. We have to regain the public’s trust,and#8221; McClintock said. and#8220;People didn’t vote for (John) McCain because they didn’t want a third Bush term, although it looks like they got a Carter second term instead.and#8221;
Health care hasn’t been entirely partisan, however, McClintock said, with Democrats voting against proposed bills and not opposing the Republican idea of allowing residents to shop for insurance across state lines, effectively increasing market competition.
More than 100 people attended Monday’s forum at Truckee Town Hall.
Earlier Monday, McClintock took time to speak with the Sierra Sun one-on-one about Truckee, Tahoe and 4th district issues.
and#8220;I was named ranking member of the Power and Water Subcommittee, which handles hydroelectric, an issue of critical importance to this district on the headwaters of the Sacramento system,and#8221; McClintock said.
This could mean the creation of more electricity and the storage of more water in the northern Sierra, he said.
He opposed the recent California Safe, Clean and Reliable Drinking Water Supply Act that could give $75 million to Sierra Nevada watershed projects and $100 million to Tahoe because of potential pork-barrel spending.
and#8220;I’m afraid it will be no better spent than the last $15 billion in water bonds voters have been sold in the last decade,and#8221; McClintock said.
He was, however, a co-sponsor for the $415 million in federal funds for the Lake Tahoe Restoration Act, primarily because of the threat of invasive species.
and#8220;The most pressing issue is infestation of quagga mussels,and#8221; McClintock said.
In Truckee, McClintock said a potential $4 to $5 million needed for the Mousehole undercrossing on Highway 89 should be a shared responsibility between the federal, state and local government.