United for Missouri, a conservative organization, has released its 2016 Legislative Scorecard, in which it ranks representatives based on their votes on selected bills. Rep. Rob Vescovo (R, 112th district, Arnold) received a 99.9% score from the group (he missed some of the votes, so he did not reach 100%). I will look at how the rest of the JeffCo delegation was rated.
United for Missouri (UfM) “is committed to educating and mobilizing citizens about the impact of limited government and economic policy on the state and the impact of the federal government exceeding its Constitutional limits on achieving growth, opportunity and prosperity.” It selected 19 bills from the 2016 session that fit within this mission, and tallied how each legislator voted. Here’s how Jefferson County’s House members fared:
- Rob Vescovo, R, 112 – 99.9%
- Shane Roden, R, 111 – 90.3%
- John McCaherty, R, 97 – 88.7%
- Dan Shaul, R, 113 – 84.0%
- Becky Ruth, R, 114 – 73.3%
- Elaine Gannon, R, 115 – 70.7%
- Ben Harris, D, 118 – 24.0%
Here is UfM’s list of bills. It includes voter ID, paycheck protection, ethics bills, court reforms, a gas tax hike, and a prescription monitoring database. The bills are weighted, so for example, Gannon got four votes “wrong,” but one of them was paycheck protection, which had UfM’s highest weighting. Roden missed on two votes; one for data storage center tax breaks (he voted yes; UfM doesn’t like targeted tax breaks), and one for the ethanol subsidy. Four House members received 100% scores, and two got 99.9%.
In the Senate, three GOP members scored 100%, including two that are running for higher office (Will Kraus for Secretary of State and Kurt Schaefer for Attorney General). Missouri’s senators scored as follows:
- Paul Wieland, R, 22 – 94.7%
- Gary Romine, R, 3 – 73.5%
Wieland got one vote “wrong” – he voted for the gas tax increase (which was not enacted).
These numbers probably aren’t too surprising to anyone that follows our legislators, but it’s interesting to see their voting records quantified.