Death by Politics

Last night's party ended with fire alarms, EMTs, CPR, ambulances and sadly, the fatal heart attack of one of the delegates. Here's the Sac Bee report

GOP former candidate dies after collapsing at convention party

Republican activist and former candidate Douglas McNea died late last night after collapsing at a party held by U.S. Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Bakersfield, at the Sheraton Grand Sacramento Hotel, according to Sutter General Hospital spokeswoman Nancy Turner.

The 64-year-old San Jose resident won the Republican nomination for the 16th Congressional District of California in 2002 and 2004 but lost both times to U.S. Rep. Zoe Lofgren, D-San Jose. He had turned 64 a week ago.

McNea had also run for the 24th Assembly District in 2006, 2008 and 2010 but lost to Democrat James Beall, of San Jose.

According to a biography on Vote-Ca.org, McNea was a nuclear industry scientist and a U.S. Navy veteran. He was married and had four grown children and eight grandchildren.

According to colleague Shane Patrick Connolly, McNea had collapsed on the dance floor at the McCarthy party Saturday night held during the California Republican Party's convention. Paramedics rushing McNea out of the hotel were pounding on his chest, eyewitnesses said.

Turner said McNea was declared dead at 11:56 p.m. Saturday after suffering a heart attack.

McNea was the chairman of the Silicon Valley Taxpayers' Association, Connolly said, and had been active on issues such as limiting eminent domain powers of government.

"He thought it was very important that people treat the money in Sacramento and Washington like they would treat their own money," Connolly said.