Goldwater Institute's Legislative Report Card
The Goldwater Institute released its 2012 Legislative Report Card for Arizona's Fifieth Legislature, First Regular Session on August 15, 2012. The report card analyzed 517 votes, 252 for the Senate and 265 for the House, in four categories (education, constitutional government, regulation, and tax & budget). Average scores were 59 percent in the Arizona State Senate and 56 percent in the Arizona House of Representatives. Senate Republicans had the highest scores with an average score of 67, followed by House Republicans (65), Senate Democrats (42), and House Democrats (39). The gap between the parties narrowed, as compared to 2011, because the Democrats' scores increased significantly, by an average of 12 in the Senate and 9 in the House. The Report Card found no significant difference between publicly and traditionally funded candidates within parties.
Click [show] in order to expand the tables below with the full lists of rankings by legislator.
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|This is the grading rubric used by the Goldwater Institute for its 2012 Legislative Report Card.|
The Goldwater Institute releases its "Legislative Report Card" annually for all Arizona legislators. The report card tracks how legislators voted on key votes and assigns them a numerical score and letter grade based on whether, in the Institute's views, their votes expand or restrict liberty. The Institute determines for each vote included in the report card whether supporting the bill "advances liberty through its fundamental components: limited government, the free enterprise system, and the rule of law." All specific votes, and the votes of each legislator are weighted equally. Each legislator is given a raw score from 0 to 100, the percentage of votes for which he or she voted to expand liberty. Letters grades are assigned to legislators based on the curved scale shown to the right. The Report Card also compares legislators' scores with their scores from the most recent previous Report Card to identify both individual and partisan trends in voting.
In addition to the percentage and letter scores explained above, the Legislative Report Card also examines legislators' partisan affiliation and campaign funding status, public or traditional, to look for patterns within groups of legislators. It also examines voting behavior on bills based on the Institute's perception of a given bill's impact on the governmental status quo, comparing legislators' scores for low, moderate, and incremental impact bills.
- Goldwater Institute "2012 Legislative Report Card for Arizona's 50th Legislature, First Regular Session," August 15, 2012, introduction
- Goldwater Institute "2012 Legislative Report Card for Arizona’s Fiftieth Legislature, First Regular Session," August 15, 2012, full report, pp. 4-5
- Goldwater Institute "2012 Legislative Report Card for Arizona’s Fiftieth Legislature, First Regular Session," August 15, 2012, full report, pp. 32-38