October 26, 2012
How Will Would-Be Legislators Vote On The Single Most Important Vote?

Here's a suggestion for journalists, here and elsewhere:  Ask would-be legislators, people running to be congressmen, senators, and state legislators who, if they are elected, they will vote for as head of their branch of the legislature.

For example, a person running for a House seat could be asked whether they plan to vote for Nancy Pelosi, a person running for the Senate could be asked whether they plan to vote for Harry Reid, and, in this state, a person running for a state house seat could be asked if they plan to vote for Speaker Frank Chopp.

It's a good question for two reasons;  First, it is usually, as I said in the post title, the most important vote that the legislator will take in a session.

Second, it produces interesting results.  In 2010, for example, a fellow blogger was able to get Democratic Congressman Rick Larsen to answer that question.  His unease at having to admit that he was planning to vote for Nancy Pelosi was obvious, and told us something about him — and her.

But for a more vivid example, take a look at what happened when Chicago Tribune columnist John Kass tried to get Democratic candidates to say whether they planned to vote for the state Democratic boss, Speaker Michael Madigan.

Curiously enough, many of them didn't want to answer his question.

We called state Rep. Patrick Verschoore, D-Milan, of the 72nd Legislative District. A polite woman answered and said that Verschoore was in the office. But when we mentioned Madigan, an amazing thing happened. Verschoore disappeared.

"He must have stepped out," she said, then told us to leave a number. He didn't call back.

We also left a Madigan message with state Rep. Elaine Nekritz, D-Northbrook, of the 57th District. But no luck. Same with other Democrats, such as Des Plaines Mayor Marty Moylan, 55th District; state Rep. Michelle "Mom on a Mission" Mussman, Schaumburg, 56th District; and Scott Drury, a former federal prosecutor from Highwood, running in the 58th District.

There's more, but that should be enough to give you the idea.  Sometimes what politicians won't say tells you more than what they will say.

Since I am addressing this suggestion to professional journalists, I probably don't have to add that, if a candidate does answer this question, you'll want to follow up and ask them why or why not.

Cross posted at Jim Miller on Politics.

(Speaker Madigan is probably safe, for now, from any state prosecutions.   if you aren't sure why, take a look at the Illinois state attorney general.)

Posted by Jim Miller at October 26, 2012 04:27 PM | Email This
1. While it's an interesting question, I submit most would vote for their own party. An experienced pol (read good liar) will put on his best straight face and say whatever is in his own best interest.

Particularly Democrats, have no reservations about withholding campaign cash and coveted committee chairmanships and assignments. I believe it's blackmail if you or I do it.

It's about the politics, the cash and the position, not about honesty.

AND you'd have to have an equally honest media to even ask that landmine question.

We're batting ZERO in the honesty category.

Posted by: RagnarDanneskold on October 26, 2012 07:45 PM
2. Alrighty then - I'm changing the subject and going OFF TOPIC

Policy organization rates best and worst lawmakers on security issues

The full scorecard rankings for all officials are available here.

So let's look at our Washington delegation, shall we?

Party Score Rating
Maria Cantwell D 0% Low
Patty Murray D 0% Low
Jay Inslee D 13% Low
Rick Larsen D 23% Low
J.H.Beutler R 91% Champion
Doc Hastings R 100% Champion
Cathy McMorris Rodgers R 100% Champion
Norman " Norm" Dicks D 32% Mid-range
James "Jim" McDermott D 0% Low
Dave Reichert R 100% Champion
Adam Smith D 32% Mid-range

Aren't we just so proud of our Democrats? Especially our glorious senators?


Posted by: RagnarDanneskold on October 27, 2012 11:32 AM
3. Um no, not proud at all of the senators, but my congress woman is a winner in that list.

Posted by: Smeethow on October 27, 2012 12:23 PM
4. My congressman, Norm Dicks, has gone from moderate to Marxist during the past decade. I think it's time we forced senators and congressmen to spend between-session time in their home states and districts. Far too many lobbyists, cocktail parties, media weasels, leftists and money launderers in DC.

Patty Murray is owned by the abortion industry. Check out opensecrets.org to find our who the rest have sold themselves to.

Posted by: Saltherring on October 27, 2012 01:35 PM
5. Patty Murray is just not pro-abortion, according to her rating, she is not anti-killing Americans...

And speaking of Catholics [/SNICKER] Murray, Cantwell and abortion - which actually we're not-

Romney is the only candidate Catholics can support in good conscience

Green Bay Bishop to Catholics: Vote Pro-Life, Or Your Soul is in Jeopardy

Archbishop: Catholics Can't Vote for Pro-Abortion Candidates

Archbishop Chaput: Catholic teaching trumps party loyalty on abortion

Catholics And Politics: A Wake-Up Call

Who are You Voting For?

"So as Catholics in the US who love their faith decide on how to cast their vote this election .. one thing is certain."
"You can't vote for Obama and claim to be a faithful Catholic."

"It's Time to Pray America" Video Rallies Catholic Voters


Posted by: RagnarDanneskold on October 27, 2012 02:02 PM
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