Campaign 2010

May 05, 2014

Caught Red-handed: Valadao Trying to Mislead California Voters, Ashamed of His Record

Congressman David Valadao is trying to mislead voters at the ballot box ahead of the June primary by omitting his current occupation – listing “Farmer/ Small Businessman” – instead of being upfront with voters. Perhaps it’s because Congressman Valadao is ashamed about his lengthy record of inaction - it’s one that contains plenty of issues that voters will have on their minds when they go to the polls.

What Congressman David Valadao Could Be Embarrassed About

  • Voted for the reckless government shutdown, then blocked the vote on re-opening the government
  • Refused to support an immediate vote on immigration reform
  • Abused his position on Appropriations Committee, financially benefitting himself
  • Voted for plan increasing Medicare costs for seniors by 50 percent

“Since his last election, we’ve learned that Congressman David Valadao voted for the reckless government shutdown, refused to support an immediate vote on immigration reform, abused his position on the House Appropriations Committee, and supported making seniors pay higher health costs,” said Tyrone Gayle of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. “Congressman David Valadao has given Californians plenty of reasons to retire him, and he should be upfront about the job he has and the record of inaction that’s come with it.”

BACKGROUND:

Valadao Voted for Extreme Plan that would “Likely Result” in Government Shutdown. In 2013, Valadao voted for an extreme House Republican continuing resolution that the Associated Press reported would “likely result” in the shutdown of the federal government. The bill passed 230-189. [HJ Res 59, Vote #478, 9/20/13; Associated Press, 8/23/13]

…Then Blocked Vote on Re-Opening Government. In 2013, on the second day of a government shutdown, Valadao voted to block consideration of a vote on a clean government funding resolution, which would have re-opened the federal government. The motion to block consideration of the bill passed 230-194. [HJ Res 70, Vote #512, 10/02/13; Talking Points Memo, 10/02/13]

CREW: Valadao “Abused His Position on the House Committee on Appropriations to Benefit His Family and His Family’s Financial Interest.” In July 2013, Valadao was targeted in an ethics complaint by the Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) for offering an  amendment that, if passed, would have blocked or delayed high-speed rail and, in effect, benefitted his and his family members’ personal financial interests. At the time of the vote, Valadao directly owned three dairy properties, valued at more than $1.8 million, along one proposed high-speed rail route. Additionally, Valadao’s family and his dairy partnership owned another $7.5 million in property within a mile of at least one route option. Valadao failed to reveal to his fellow Appropriations Committee members that his family’s property could have been negatively affected by the high-speed rail route. According to CREW, Valadao’s nondisclosure constituted a “violation of House conflict of interest rules.”[HR 2610, Amendment #6, 6/27/13; House Appropriations Committee press release, 6/27/13; Fresno Bee, 7/23/13; CREW Complaint, 7/23/13]

CREW Renewed its Investigation Request After Valadao Again Failed to Disclose his Conflict. In January 2014, CREW renewed its ethics investigation request after Valadao testified in opposition to California’s high-speed rail project before the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee without first disclosing that he stood to benefit financially if the project died. [CREW Renewed Request for Investigation, 1/27/14]

Spent $82,849.68 on “Legal Services” in Q4 2013. While CREW’s investigation request on Valadao was pending, he spent $82,849.68 on “legal services” from Patton Boggs LLP in Q4 2013. [FEC.gov, accessed 5/05/14]

February 2014: CREW Refused to Drop their Complaint. In February 2014, CREW stood by its calls for an investigation. “CREW remains convinced the congressman violated conflict of interest rules,” the organization said. [Fresno Bee, 2/21/14]

Valadao Wouldn’t Bring Immigration Reform to Immediate Vote Due to Fear of Tarnishing Reputation with GOP Colleagues. In March 2014, Valadao’s spokeswoman said that Valadao wouldn’t sign the discharge petition to bring the House comprehensive immigration reform bill to a vote because it would “discredit him” with his Republican colleagues. “They won’t take his word the way they do now,” she said. [89.3 KPPC, 3/25/14]

Voted for FY 2015 House Republican Budget. In April 2014, Denham voted against the FY 2015 House Republican budget. The budget would turn Medicare into a voucher program and give tax breaks to the wealthy and corporations while raising taxes on the middle class. The budget passed, 219-205. [H Con Res 96, Vote #177, 4/10/14]

Republican Voucher Plan Would Increase Medicare Premiums for Seniors by 50 Percent. “While Rep. Ryan uses a different formula than in past budgets to set the value of the voucher, it would still make traditional Medicare increasingly unaffordable for senior citizens. Higher out-of-pocket premiums for traditional Medicare would force seniors into private plans, where they may not have access to the doctors they want to see. The Congressional Budget Office, or CBO, previously found that under a premium support plan, premiums would increase by 50 percent for traditional Medicare.” [Center for American Progress, 4/01/14]