The Perfect Score

by Erica Szpynda

Widener University Economics Major

The American Conservative Union ranks members of Congress on how their votes on key measure relate to the Republican Party.  Keeping the stereotype that congress does not get anything in mind, let’s look at the numbers for 2012:

  • 38 members of the House and 8 members of the Senate voted with the GOP 100% of the time.  These members include Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, Marco Rubio, Florida, Pat Toomey, Pennsylvania and Tea Party leader Michelle Bachmann, Minnesota.
  • 20 Senators and 88 Representatives did not vote with the GOP on any measures.

Of the 535 members of Congress, 154 or 28.8% voted straight with their parties.  This makes it seem that 28% of Congress is unwilling to negotiate from their party lines.  2012 was seen as a year of a highly partisan Congress that couldn’t get anything passed.  The fiscal cliff came and Congress did not actually pass anything until after the January 1st deadline.  Since 2013 is not an election year it will be fun to see if members of Congress are willing to cross lines and negotiate across party lines.

Congress not getting anything done is a problem and gives them an approval rating lower than cockroaches.  With the numbers shown, it is interesting that 28% vote with their party all of the time and hopefully their reasoning is that this is what their constituency believes in.