Georgia scorecard: One senator, 13 reps earn A’s

Another reminder that the primaries are less than a month away: scorecards and voter guides are beginning to appear.

The Georgia chapter of Americans for Prosperity, which champions limited government and free markets, has a new scorecard for the 2009-10 Legislature, and unfortunately for lawmakers the grades weren’t put on a curve: A’s were given to just one senator and 13 representatives who actually cast votes on the issues that were scored.

That’s one senator out of 56 and 13 representatives out of 180:

Sen. Judson Hill (R., Marietta)

Rep. Timothy Bearden (R., Villa Rica)

Rep. Charlice Byrd (R., Woodstock)

Rep. David Casas (R., Lilburn)

Rep. Clay Cox (R., Gwinnett County)

Rep. Mark Hatfield (R., Waycross)

Rep. Billy Horne (R., Newnan)

Rep. Barry Loudermilk (R., Cassville)

Rep. Alan Powell (D., Hartwell)

Rep. Bobby Reese (R., Sugar Hill)

Rep. Austin Scott (R., Tifton)

Rep. Martin Scott (R., Rossville)

Rep. Jay Shaw (D., Lakeland)

Rep. Daniel Stout (R., Hiram)

The seven bills scored were:

HB 307 (Hospital Bed Tax — AFP wanted a “no” vote)

HB 1023 (JOBS bill — AFP wanted “yes”)

HB 1055 (Drivers License Tax — AFP wanted “no”)

HB 1184/SB 407 (allowing health insurance sales across state lines — AFP wanted “yes”)

SB 1 (Zero Base Budgeting — AFP wanted “yes”)

SB 148 (Sunset Review — AFP wanted “yes”)

SB 411 (would allow Georgians to forgo parts of ObamaCare — AFP wanted “yes”)

If you look at the scorecard itself, you’ll see more A’s than that; AFP also gave top grades to people like David Adelman and Eric Johnson, who served the Senate in 2009 but left their offices before the 2010 session (Adelman to become the U.S. ambassador to Singapore, Johnson to run for governor). But one of the votes for which AFP gave them credit was on SB 148; AFP favored this bill because it became the vehicle for sunset-review legislation, but that language wasn’t yet included in SB 148 back in 2009, when Adelman, Johnson and some other now-former senators voted for it.

So, for the purposes of this blog, I only counted those legislators who actually cast votes on at least six of the seven issues AFP scored. That leaves us with the one senator and 13 representatives getting A’s — and, on the flip side, 11 senators and 43 representatives got F’s.

I won’t list them all here, but suffice it to say that a number of them are liberals who will wear an “F” from a conservative outfit like AFP with pride.

In tandem with this scorecard, the Georgia Tea Party released a voter guide that includes the votes and stances on a number of issues for all candidates for the Legislature and state-wide offices.

(H/t: Peach Pundit)

10 comments Add your comment


June 22nd, 2010
10:43 am

Some background on what Americans for Prosperity actually is would be helpful.

Kyle Wingfield

June 22nd, 2010
10:56 am

That’s a fair point, scrappy. I’ve added a line about them and a link to their “about” page on their website in the original post.


June 22nd, 2010
11:20 am

I don’t buy into the rhetoric. Americans for Prosperity champions limited government primarily on behalf of big business (e.g., fewer consumer, worker, and environmental protections), which by the way, is the opposite of championing free markets.

The Snark

June 23rd, 2010
10:57 am

I’m going to start an organization called “Patriotic Americans for Liberty, Baseball, and Apple Pie.” We’re going to issue scorecards to elected officials based on a litmus test of whether they voted the way WE want them to vote on selected bills that are of interest to US. Those bills will be chosen based on which industry wants to fund us. We will publish the names of officials with low scores on a press release entitled “The Red Channel.”

Any takers?

The Anti-Snark

June 23rd, 2010
11:02 am

I’m going to start an organization called “Patriotic Americans for Freedom, Mom, and Apple Pie.” We’re going to issue scorecards to elected officials based on a litmus test of whether they are fullly informed on the issues and exercise independent judgment in voting on bills. All bills. Negative points for repeating talking points authored by either party, oversimplified and misleading sound bites, or insults at other elected officials. Bonus points for every time they publically agree with something the other party does that is in the public interest.

But I guess no one would fund such a venture, and no reporters would bother to cover us. It’s so much easier to just write up the cheap shots and put your byline on it.

Any takers?

[...] That’s one senator out of 56 and 13 representatives out of 180. Read the complete post. [...]

Rule .303

June 24th, 2010
10:25 am

The fact that Judson Hill is on this list automatically discredits this list since he sponsored Senate Bill 28 a few years back. What is SB 28? Well it has a lot in common with the national healthcare bill. Requiring everyone to carry health insurance doesn’t sound like “limited government” to me.

I guess Americans for Prosperity doesn’t have a research arm?


June 24th, 2010
2:10 pm

I’d like to know what all the layers of policy choices were in those 7 bills that they scored. But, I don’t want to do the work. Kyle, you do it for me.

Cobb Voter

June 24th, 2010
9:29 pm

Rule .303…why don’t you enlighten us about the facts surrounding S.B. 28? Or is your goal simply to float half truths to support your agenda? Research? Read for yourselves the content of S.B. 28.

Rule .303

June 30th, 2010
1:59 pm

Well Cobb Voter, if you’re able to read, check out 33-62-15 of the bill.