By Sage Sauerbrey, Moonshine Ink
As the California 4th Congressional District campaign stretches into July, incumbent Tom McClintock and challenger Jessica Morse have yet to square off in a public debate. Moonshine Ink recently reached out to both candidates and they both agreed to a virtual debate using written responses. Each responded to a different selection of three of the six separate questions, and their answers were forwarded to the opposing candidate for rebuttal.
Q: California has, of late, run against the grain of the national trends. Its sanctuary state policies run counter to federal law, Kevin De León is pushing a single party healthcare system, and Governor Jerry Brown has repeatedly stood up to President Trump on climate change. Do you think California is ahead of, or behind the curve, and why?
McClintock: How are those policies working? California now has the highest effective poverty rate in the nation, the 13th highest violent crime rate, is 10th from the bottom in education, has the seventh highest electricity prices, despite the highest income, sales, and gasoline taxes in the country. Compare that to our success in Washington in reducing the tax and regulatory burdens on Americans: unemployment is the lowest since 2000, consumer confidence the highest since 2004, with the economy expanding at more than twice the rate we averaged under Obama. Which direction we want to take as a nation is the fundamental choice before us in November.
Morse rebuttal: Tom McClintock is a career politician who has spent decades collecting a paycheck from California taxpayers, all the while choosing to lay blame and sow division rather than address any of the serious challenges facing our district. Rather than supporting measures to help our struggling families, Tom McClintock voted for a tax bill that raises taxes on the majority of families in our district, those making under $100,000 per year. Rather than supporting our seniors, he wants to raise the retirement age and just voted to cut more than $400 billion from Social Security and Medicare. Rather than making it easier for the next generation to have high paying local jobs, Tom McClintock cut funding for vocational training and proposes eliminating all financial aid for higher education. Tom McClintock has not passed a single piece of meaningful legislation during his decades in politics and is actually harming the people of our district by voting against our values and our pocketbooks. I’m sick of career politicians playing political games rather than coming up with solutions. That’s why I will work with both parties to implement real solutions to the real problems facing our district.