The Moderate Washingtonian

Outlook on politics and elections in the state of Washington from an overall centrist viewpoint. My views tend to be libertarian in nature, but at the same time are largely nonpartisan.

01 July 2008

WCV releases legislative scorecard for 2007-2008

Washington Conservation Voters, an interest group that advocates environmental protection, released its voting record scorecard for our legislature today. Unlike other interest groups that issue ratings, WCV does biennial scorecards rather than annual.

Each time one of these groups releases its rating sheets I find it interesting to look them over. It can give readers an idea of which legislators are willing to vote independently of their caucus on which issues, and in the game of moderate politics, that's a worthwhile venture. Below are the highlights of the scorecard, including which members scored at the top and bottom of their respective caucus. For the Awards section, all listed are Democrats unless otherwise noted.

2007 Legislator of the Year: Senator Phil Rockefeller
2008 Legislator of the Year: Senator Chris Marr
Senate Environmental Champions: Lisa Brown, Craig Pridemore.
House Environmental Champions: Tom Campbell [R], Frank Chopp, Mary Lou Dickerson, Hans Dunshee, Fred Jarrett, Skip Priest [R], Christine Rolfes, Geoff Simpson, Dave Upthegrove.
Senate Good Deeds: Darlene Fairley, Karen Fraser, Jim Hargrove, Margarita Prentice, Debbie Regala.
House Good Deeds: Bill Fromhold, Zack Hudgins, Sam Hunt, Ross Hunter, Ruth Kagi, Kelli Linville, John McCoy, Sharon Nelson, Eric Pettigrew, Jay Rodne [R].
Senate Green Duds: Steve Hobbs, Jim Kastama, Cheryl Pflug [R].
House Green Duds: Richard DeBolt [R], Jim Dunn [R], Deb Wallace.

It isn't my intent in summarizing these ratings to judge the validity of the scores or express my own opinions on their aims, but I must briefly protest how WCV treats Hobbs and Wallace in this cycle's scorecard. Considering both these legislators supported their aims over 90% of the time, I think it's a bit harsh to decry their entire performance based on one vote the organization didn't like.

Senate Democrats - High
Tied at 100

Senate Democrats - Low
Tim Sheldon 46
Mary Margaret Haugen 77
Brian Hatfield 77
Jim Hargrove 77
Jim Kastama 77
Jean Berkey 77

Senate Republicans - High
Jim Clements 50 (2007 only)
Cheryl Pflug 46
Don Benton 46
Mike Carrell 46
Dan Swecker 42
Pam Roach 42

Senate Republicans - Low
Jim Honeyford 8
Jerome Delvin 9
Curtis King 14 (2008 only)
Bob Morton 15
Mark Schoesler 15
Janea Holmquist 15
Val Stevens 15

House Democrats - High
Tied at 100

House Democrats - Low
Bill Grant 55
Troy Kelley 73
Brian Blake 82
Dean Takko 82
Lynn Kessler 82
Kevin Van de Wege 82

House Republicans - High
Skip Priest 82
Chris Strow 80 (2007 only)
Jay Rodne 73
Shirley Hankins 70
Joyce McDonald 64
Maureen Walsh 64
Barbara Bailey 64
Glenn Anderson 64

House Republicans - Low
Steve Hailey 0
Jim Dunn 9
Tied at 18

For the partisan highs and lows it seems to be the usual suspects, with Tim Sheldon being the Democratic anomaly and Skip Priest continuing to look like the most moderate legislator. Otherwise notable was the fact that in the 16th district GOP Rep. Maureen Walsh scored a higher rating than Democratic seatmate Bill Grant.