Not many people fail to return the phone calls of billionaires. Tom McClintock is one.
McClintock dropped by The Bee to talk policy and politics today, and recalled that billionaire Meg Whitman called him last year as she was gearing up to run full-bore for governor.
"I didn't think there would be anything productive that would come from the conversation," the flinty Republican congressman from Elk Grove said, explaining why he didn't call her back.
McClintock has been exhorting conservatives to nominate Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner in Tuesday's Republican primary, saying on a recent ad that it's time California had a governor from the "Republican wing of the Republican Party."
If Poizner loses on Tuesday, and Whitman is the Republican nominee, McClintock is not sure what he would do.
"I wouldn't be an automatic endorsement," McClintock said. A campaign between Whitman and Democratic Attorney General Jerry Brown would present a "Hobson's choice" between "Arnold Schwarzenegger's third term and Jerry Brown's third term."
"I don't see any vision for the future," McClintock said of Whitman. "I don't see any political involvement or vision that predates her turning a longing eye on the governor's office."
Then there is the matter of the Republican primary for the U.S. Senate seat held by Barbara Boxer. McClintock has endorsed Orange County Republican Assemblyman Chuck DeVore over Carly Fiorina and Tom Campbell.
What does he think about Fiorina? Not much. During her tenure as chief executive at Hewlett-Packard, the company politics "very definitely tilted left."