We’ve seen how ill-informed and uninformed voters keep electing politicians who really don’t represent what those voters think they do. Bottom line, it is NOT what they say; it is what they DO that matters. The ultimate measure of a U.S. Congressman is his voting record
Our goal here is simply to show how they vote so constituents can make an informed choice instead of just voting a face or a party. Over the years, I’ve found that using voting scorecards of groups whose research has proven to be accurate is a good place to start.
Republicans are on the conservative side and the Democrats are on the liberal side but, look out for the exceptions in the ratings below. Their votes will tell you. Too often a vote depends on how it affects their individual reelection rather than their party’s line. Too many votes depend on how much a lobbyist has contributed to the campaign –the special interests invest $billions in their “honest” politicians. They define the honest pol as one who, “once bought, stays bought.” We’d like to see politicians wear logos of their top 10 contributors on their jackets like NASCAR racers and PGA golfers do. We would also like to see term limits established as a current Congressional bill would do. See www.termlimits.org.
Let’s get started. The 27-member Florida congressional delegation consists of 17 Republicans and 10 Democrats but the newly elected are not rated yet and Mack and West are no longer in Congress. The unrated first termers are Murphy, Yoho, DeSantis, Grayson, Garcia, Frankel and Radel. Anyone can go to the websites to check on individual votes but here is a summary that tells where each stands on the left-right spectrum based on actual votes in the 112th Congress. Subsequent columns will look at individual bills and votes.
ADA ratings for adherence to the liberal agenda include votes for 2012. Of the six Dems rated, Hastings, Wilson, Deutch and Wasserman-Schultz are at 90% or better and the other two, Brown and Castor, at 80% and 70% respectively. ADA’s highest rating for a Republican is Miller at 20% followed by Mack and Stearns at 10% and the others at O% to 5%. Sen. Nelson gets 90%; Rubio 0%. Those are liberal ratings on key votes. See http://tinyurl.com/kq7gbwg Heritage Action is our best guide for the conservative ratings. All six Dems are at the bottom with 9% to 15% while all of the Repubs are more conservative. However, there is a wide spread; 43% Ros-Lehtinen, 44% Diaz-Balart, 46% Rivera, 51% Crenshaw, 57% Young, 58% Buchanan, 64% Webster, 65% Bilirakis, 67% Mica, 70% West, 71% Nugent and 73% for Rooney. In the 81% to 85% range were Stearns, Adams, Southerland, Posey and Mack. The top two in the 92% -93% were Ross and Miller with Sen. Rubio at 96%; Nelson at 8%. For the key votes go to http://tinyurl.com/kdljgmh
CAGW rates Congress as Taxpayer Heroes, Friendly to Taxpayers, Lukewarm, Unfriendly and Hostile to Taxpayers. We’ll look at the extremes here but look up all at http://tinyurl.com/qbuy67f The top Hero from Florida is Sen. Rubio. Next, Taxpayers Heroes in order: Mack, Stearns, Miller, Southerland –all Repubs. Most Hostile to Taxpayers: Castor, Deutch, Hastings, Wilson, Wasserman-Schultz and the worst, Corrine Brown. All six Florida Dems are Hostile to Taxpayers.
NTU grades A, B, C. D and F. A score qualifying for a grade of “A” indicates the member is one of the strongest supporters of responsible tax and spending policies. They get NTU’s “Taxpayers’ Friend Award.” A score significantly below average qualifies for a grade of “F.” This failing grade places the member into the “Big Spender” category. Rubio at 91% gets an A as Taxpayers’ Friend while Sen. Nelson an F at 15% is a Big Spender. The only Taxpayers’ Friend in the House was Mack but Big Spenders include Castor and Hastings at 14%, Deutch 13%, Brown 10%, Wasserman-Schultz 9%, Wilson 7%. Again, all of the Dems are at bottom. See them all http://tinyurl.com/nynacrw
The Club for Growth gave two Defender of Economic Freedom awards to Rep. Ross and Sen. Rubio. Ross at 93% was followed closely by Mack, Miller and Stearns. Nelson’s lifetime 13% contrasts to Rubio’s 94%. The Club’s rating system examines legislative actions that affect immediate pro-economic growth policy goals such as reduced taxes, regulatory reform and deregulation, school choice, a balanced budget, free trade and replacing the current tax code with a fair of flat tax and other policies that encourage economic growth and prosperity. Get the details at http://tinyurl.com/oejozzb
Actual voting patterns of congress go a long way in explaining the nation’s $17 trillion debt and the sluggish economy.
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