McClintock race could be a good test of ‘top-two’ voting

Art Moore

Art Moore

Promoters of California’s top-two primary voting system claim it will produce more moderate winners when both candidates are from the same party because of the need to attract general election votes from the other party.

We will get a good opportunity to test that claim in November when it appears that Rep. Tom McClintock, easily one of the most conservative members of Congress, will face a fellow Republican for his fourth Congressional district seat.

Art Moore, a native of Auburn who went off to West Point and a military career before returning to the area recently, has filed to challenge McClintock in the Republican primary. Since no Democrats seem interested in entering the race, McClintock and Moore are likely to face-off in November.

Tom McClintock

Tom McClintock

Moore calls himself a conservative who believes in individual liberty and limited government, but that isn’t the way McClintock described him in a recent email to his network of donors:

“It’s obvious the liberals want to entice enough Republicans to break-off and join Democrats to elect a liberal Republican in a district that won’t elect a liberal Democrat.”

All candidates turn a small fire into a five-alarm blaze when it comes to raising money, but there is some truth in what McClintock says. The district, which includes Truckee, is one of most conservative in the state–but it does have 117,000 registered Democrats.

If Moore is to upset the incumbent, he will need the votes of moderate Republicans and a large chunk of those Democrats. You can be sure McClintock won’t make an effort to attract any of those voters.

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