The National Religious Campaign Against Torture has released its annual scorecard. NRCAT scored Senators and Representatives based on a variety of votes.
Paul Ryan recieved a score of 11/100 by failing ot act against torture on eight of nine opportunities.
Ron Paul, by contrast received a score of 83. (He missed some votes and co-sponsorship opportunities.) Rand Paul is at 50%—but he’s new enough that there’s not much data.
John Boehner managed a perfect 0. Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi received 100.
I would encourage anybody interested in preventing torture by the U.S. to look through the score cards. As my libertarian friends are quick to point out, nobody has a perfect record. But … there are many shades of imperfect. If ending torture is important to you, you don’t have a lot of friends among the Republicans. And you definitely won’t have a lot of friends in Mitt “Double Guantanamo” Romney’s administration.
This is interesting and a worthwhile metric.
However, I want to caution against, what i perceive to be, the notion that a legislator’s job is to vote. Legislator’s jobs are complicated and multifaceted and judging a legislator by votes (alone) is a very binary judgement system that misses most of what their jobs and values are.
This is where I come to Paul Ryan’s (and several legislators) defense (not on torture). Ryan is criticized for accepting stimulus money for his district while voting against the stimulus itself. Ryan, as a legislator, responded to requests from his constituents in the crafting of the stimulus bill, which the creation of is a complicated affair. His ultimate vote against the bill, even though it contained projects in his district, is not a hypocrisy, and might not even be intentional.
On many issues, votes on bills encompass massive undertakings affecting huge swaths of our society- and judging a legislator by his vote on a bill can be about as pertinent as saying I go to work because I like sitting in traffic.
Ending torture is complicated, and “voting the bums out who voted x” is a fools errand which will never be accomplished. Often, we have to arrange it so that it is possible for the legislator to vote a certain way. Not surprisingly, with support for torture at the highest levels ever- there are a lot of things that have to change before that comes about. Our representatives are exactly that.
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- fatchance said: Very pleased that my state senators and district congressman (VA) all scored 100!
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