Congressman Tom McClintock’s Sham Town Hall Meetings

Congressman Tom McClintock is notorious for being absent from his district. Modesto residents who enjoyed the regular presence of Congressman Josh Harder before redistricting moved him north have been especially disgruntled by McClintock’s absenteeism. His Modesto office is often unstaffed. Below, former Modesto City Councilmember Bruce Frohman expresses his frustration with McClintock’s remote town hall meetings, which always seem to interrupt Frohman’s dinner hour. ed

Bruce Frohman
Bruce Frohman

At 6PM dinner time on Monday, June 17, Congressman Tom McClintock started his town hall meeting. He always starts these meetings during the dinner hour to minimize citizen participation while maintaining the posture of being a participatory representative.

After having my dinner interrupted by his robo calls at 6PM on three different previous occasions, I decided to pause my dinner and become a participant. So, I stayed on the line and pressed zero in order to ask a question.

McClintock’s call screener came on the line, asked me my name and then asked me what my question was.  I gave him my name and asked: “I live here in Modesto and we have quality of life problems. What programs are the congressman working on to address our issues?”

When my turn to talk came up, I heard “Hello, what is your question?”

I started to talk and was promptly cut off, supposedly because they could not hear me.  But then, the next caller was greeted with, “Hello, Max. What is your question?

Given that my name was known but was not mentioned in the greeting, and the promptness with which I was cut off, one may conclude that I had attempted to ask a question that the congressman did not want or could not answer.

In reality, McClintock has done nothing to benefit his constituents in Modesto and little if anything for the rest of his district.

The congressman is a poser and a sycophant. He simply repeats the political party line over and over.

As far as I can tell, McClintock is afraid to hold an in person Town Hall Meeting because then he cannot control the questioning or be required to answer the tough questions.

Note on Tom McClintock's door, June, 2024
Anybody home? McClintock Office, June, 2024

The sad part about living in McClintock’s district is while other congressmen are fighting for money to benefit their districts, our sleepy representative votes against bills that benefit us, like the nationwide infrastructure bill. As our local economy languishes, he does nothing beyond posturing on straw man issues.

The voters in McClintock’s district either don’t know what a liability he is, or vote to re-elect him out of blind loyalty.

While this writer is not advocating in favor of any political party, one would expect the Republican Party to run a more qualified candidate. The do-nothing politician has no experience that is useful to the citizens of Modesto or the district that he is supposed to represent. He holds office to collect a paycheck and propagandize.

We will never have a thriving community until we elect a more conscientious representative who will actually do the job that he is supposed to do — represent us.

Bruce Frohman
Bruce Frohman
Bruce Frohman served on the Modesto City Council from 1999-2003. He believes the best way to build a better community is to have an informed citizenry.
Comments should be no more than 350 words. Comments may be edited for correctness, clarity, and civility.


  1. I agree with your assessment of our do-nothing Congressman. The citizens of Modesto are being cheated out of meaningful representation in the House.

  2. Dislike having McClintock as my congressman. What a difference from Josh Harder. McClintock doesn’t really care about our local issues. He is just interested in a safe Republican district where he can be a loyal foot soldier in the Republican Party culture war.

  3. I agree with the article. One way to express our frustration with McClintock’s poor representation of CA5 is to better support Mike Barkley for our next congressman

  4. When I lived in Tuolumne County, McClintock was my congressman. Then when I moved back to Modesto, I got stuck with him AGAIN. He is horrible — at a public comment period in Sonora about 10 years ago, when a young woman was giving information about wildlife, an audience member booed. McClintock smirked, did nothing to shut down the harassment. Sadly, those of us who are in his district will likely be stuck with him until he resigns, he is loved by Sierra foothill residents. BTW….when I participate with his phone-in Town Halls, they never let me ask a question.

  5. For as long as McClintock has represented the Modesto area I have sent him emails either commenting on issues he has taken a stand on or asking him to take a stand on an issue that is important to me. Here is an example: “I strongly disagree with your recent statement where you said, ‘Obvious double standards and glaring political agendas have clearly corrupted our justice system and are now turning it against our democracy. This is a hallmark of leftist regimes and it won’t end well.'” Each time I have asked for a reply, which, if I get one, is in the form of a boilerplate response with nothing of substance. I would continue to email him if I had any hope of influencing him or at least letting him know that he has constituents that don’t agree with him. I’ll vote for Barkley when he runs against McClintock, but I’m going out-of-district to work to elect Adam Gray so we can at least have one more Democrat in Congress.

  6. Moved to New Hampshire after being a lifelong resident of Oakdale in 2019. I kept my 209 area code number. I get his robocalls around 9PM. The topics he states as important are not to me. After reading this I’m certain he wouldn’t take my questions. C’mon voters, do better.

  7. Cadem org. Is not helping Barkely with his campaign. No action help.
    McClintock is an example of cemented opinions and has no inclination to entertain any action other than what the Republican party dictate. Project 2025, the Republican mandate they will hand to Trump as President, will create a Gov. process to guarantee he will remain President from now on. Right in line with SCOTUS Roberts decisions and the Trump appointees plus the one McConnell stole from Pres. Obama. Trump’s gov. Will only have LOYALISTS in his power circle. McClintock is of the type to ingratiate himself with the most powerful and that isn’t you and I.


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