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25th Congressional District candidate profile: Howard "Buck" McKeon

Posted: June 2, 2012 11:06 p.m.
Updated: June 2, 2012 11:06 p.m.

Howard "Buck" McKeon

 

Incumbent Congressman Howard P. “Buck” McKeon, R-Santa Clarita, strides toward the open primary as one of the more powerful men in the U.S. House of Representatives.

First elected to Congress in 1992, McKeon has served in the House for 20 years and is chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, which oversees national security policy, military resources, and military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Prior to that he served as a senior member of the Education and the Workforce Committee.

But McKeon has faced increasing criticism on the home front, in part due to his inability to win congressional approval for a bill that would block a giant sand and gravel mine in Canyon Country.

Bloggers have also attacked him over claims he received special treatment from Countrywide Financial Corp. during a home refinancing, McKeon said he was unaware of any preferential treatment, and he has been charged with no wrongdoing.

Born in Los Angeles in September 1938, McKeon has called the Santa Clarita Valley home for most of his life.

He grew up in Tujunga and graduated from Verdugo Hills High School in 1956. After serving a 2 1/2-year mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, he attended Brigham Young University.

He settled in the Santa Clarita Valley after marrying Patricia, they started a family, and he began a career as a businessman — a point raised repeatedly in public forums by his wife in her own campaign for the 38th Assembly District seat.

The couple has six children and 31 grandchildren.

McKeon started his political career serving on the William S. Hart Union High School District governing board from 1978 to 1987. In that time, the city of Santa Clarita was incorporated and its citizens selected him as a member of the City Council.

He was elected to the House in 1992 following a redistricting of Congressional District 25.

McKeon announced his candidacy to run again in the upcoming election on the day the state’s redistricting commission revealed its final map for District 25 which included Simi Valley and Porter Ranch.

 

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