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Posted: 5/15/2003 11:20:53 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/22/2003 7:54:32 AM EDT by The_Macallan]
[b]Rep. Dennis Hastert, R-IL[/b] [URL=http://www.gunowners.org/108hrat.htm]GOA-Rating:[/URL] [b]C-[/b] ("leans our way: occasionally")[URL=http://www.bradycampaign.com/legislation/federal/votes/test4.asp?individual=house&house=142] Brady Ranking:[/URL] [b]0%[/b] (0/21 votes supporting Brady positions) Voted against '94 AWB and voted for AWB repeal in '96... and AGAINST the '93 Brady Bill. [b]Rep. F. James Sensenbrenner Jr., R-WI[/b] [URL=http://www.gunowners.org/108hrat.htm]GOA-Rating:[/URL] [b]A[/b] ("pro-gun voter: philosophically sound") [URL=http://www.bradycampaign.com/legislation/federal/votes/test4.asp?individual=house&house=431]Brady Ranking:[/URL] [b]31%[/b] (6/19 votes supporting Brady positions) Voted against '94 AWB and voted for AWB repeal in '96... but voted FOR the '93 Brady Bill. WTF!??? So a guy like Hastert who votes 100% AGAINST the Brady Campaign positions is rated "C-" while a guy like Sensenbrenner who votes WITH the Bradyites 31% of the time and who voted FOR the Brady bill is rated "A"!??? Seems SOMEONE doesn't know their ass from their elbow here! What's going on????? Same thing with the Senate: [b]Sen. Orrin G. Hatch, R-UT[/b] [URL=http://www.gunowners.org/108srat.htm]GOA-Rating:[/URL] [b]C-[/b] ("leans our way: occasionally") [URL=http://www.bradycampaign.com/legislation/federal/votes/test4.asp?individual=senate&senator=88]Brady Ranking:[/URL][b] 4%[/b] (1/21 votes supporting Brady positions) Voted against 1994 AWB Crime Bill... and AGAINST the '93 Brady Bill. [b]Sen. Bill Frist, R-TN[/b] [URL=http://www.gunowners.org/108srat.htm]GOA-Rating:[/URL][b] D[/b] ("leans anti-gun: usually against us") [URL=http://www.bradycampaign.com/legislation/federal/votes/test4.asp?individual=senate&senator=83]Brady Ranking:[/URL][b] 13%[/b] (2/15 votes supporting Brady positions) Was not in Senate for 1994 AWB Crime Bill. How the fuck do these guys rank so low with GOA when they vote pro-RKBA nearly ALL of the time!?
Link Posted: 5/15/2003 11:29:16 PM EDT
Sensenbrenner is my neigboring district. What little I do know about him and his activities, which is NOT all encompassing: 1. He is a committee member (subcommittee on crime I think) and does alot behind the scenes for our cause, including killing bad stuff before it comes to a vote. 2. While he does compromise on occasion, it seems he always sticks to Constitutional principles. And when he comes out for something from the anti's, it is always in the form of something that might pass so he is modifying and cutting deals to take the most objectionable stuff out. He also occasionally has a take on a bill that hurts us but still makes sense in terms of other, unconsiderd issues. Sensenbrenner is a gentleman and a scholar.
Link Posted: 5/16/2003 8:37:10 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/16/2003 8:38:50 AM EDT by The_Macallan]
This wasn't a poke at Sensenbrenner or any other politician. I know Sensenbrenner is on our side - mostly. But how do they give him an "A" when he voted for the Brady bill - and several other anti bills while Hastert has NEVER voted for any major anti bill and yet gets a "C"??? Any GOA reps here got any insights? It really makes me question whether I can trust the info that comes from GOA.
Link Posted: 5/16/2003 8:52:12 AM EDT
WTF is up with that?
Link Posted: 5/16/2003 8:54:00 AM EDT
Perhaps the GOA ranks certain bills as more important, thus their ranking would tend to favor more strident gun opponents rather than consistent ones. The Brady ranking is obviously a straight average. All bills are weighted the same. Maybe that helps. Hastert might be consistently pro-gun, but went against the GOA's position on somthing important. The GOA rankings certainly can't be too subjective, I'd trust the Brady numbers more, given that they are doing their best to demonize low ranked politicians.
Link Posted: 5/16/2003 9:18:07 AM EDT
I have the same problem with the rating from Mississippi representatives. [b][u]Thad Cochran[/u][/b] Brady [b]9%[/b] GOA [b]D[/b] [b][u]Trent Lott[/u][/b] Brady [b]4%[/b] GOA [b]C-[/b] [b][u]Gene Taylor[/u][/b] Brady [b]5%[/b] GOA [b]A-[/b]
Link Posted: 5/19/2003 8:04:39 AM EDT
BTT for any GOA insiders.
Link Posted: 5/19/2003 8:33:25 AM EDT
I sent an email to the GOA. Maybe they will respond directly in this thread. If they email me, I will post it here.
Link Posted: 5/21/2003 11:34:02 AM EDT
Here is the reply I received.......... [i]Dear Mr. Magic, Thank you for your interest in the Gun Owners of America congressional rating. The GOA rating goes back only two or three Congresses, as opposed to being [b]lifetime[/b] ratings. There are two primary reasons for this. First, for the sake of equity. There are normally 30-40 open seats each election (35 in the 2002), meaning that after a couple of elections the rating can get distorted. A member who has been in Congress for 20 years might have 100 - 200 votes on gun issues, while a freshman member might have only 10. There is a world of difference between a [b]B[/b] rating over twenty years and a [b]B[/b] rating over two years. We could project backwards a few more years on behalf of the two-year member and predict how he would have voted in the past based on present behavior, but that would be a somewhat subjective opinion. We strive to make our rating both OBJECTIVE and IMPARTIAL. Second, and perhaps more importantly, a lifetime rating does not reflect changes over time. When a congressman votes wrong, GOA spends a lot of time, effort and money to engage our members and supporters to voice their outrage at the elected official. Sometimes the congressman actually changes his voting behavior. Are we to ignore the change, or reflect it in our rating? We choose to reflect change that is the result of our members efforts. Case in point: Rep. Sensenbrenner. After he voted for Brady 10 years ago, he was hammered in the district. Did this grassroots campaign have any impact? It did, and it is reflected in the grade. Ironically, the Brady ratings bears this out; Sensenbrenner supported their position 0% of the time since 1994. (A word about the votes the Brady Campaign uses for its rating. There are many votes that they consider to be against their position but which are in fact compromises put forth by so-called pro-gun reps. Such compromises have facilitated the passage of every piece of gun control legislation to pass over the past 30 years. Comparing GOA's rating to Brady's is definitely not comparing apples to apples, and therefore, they are not, as a some might expect, inverse to one another.) The rating of the Speaker of the House is a special case, as the Speaker rarely votes. Therefore, we do go back further in his voting history to when he did cast recorded votes, as well as considering whether he is supportive or not of the Second Amendment in the capacity as Speaker, i.e., does he push pro-gun legislation to the floor or work to keep it off. Concerning the ratings of Sens. Frist and Hatch, its surprising that anyone who cares about the Second Amendment would argue with our ratings (unless one were to argue that they were not low enough). After the Columbine shooting in 1999, a time when we most needed sensible, freedom loving elected officials to stand up against the emotional irrationalism of the anti-gun extremists, Sen. Hatch was fully on the other side. His crime bill would have effectively shut down gun shows in this country by, among other things, banning ANY private sale at a gun show that does not first go through a background registration check. His bill also would have raised the age from 18 to 21-years-old for possession of semi-automatic rifles, and he sponsored an amendment to force gun sellers to include a trigger lock with every handgun sold. In short, in the post-Columbine environment, most of GOAs lobbying efforts were directed at gun control pushed by Sen. Orrin Hatch. Sen. Frist is simply not a friend of gun owners. In addition to supporting the Sen. Hatch's gun control, he voted in favor of the so-called McCain-Feingold legislation that squelches the voice of groups like Gun Owners of America, and by extension its membership, in the final days before an election. Letter grade ratings are not an exact science and certainly have their limitations. They are useful to get an overall picture of the makeup of the Congress, but the better information is how members of Congress vote on each piece of legislation. Such information is posted on GOA's website. Hope this helps. -- Sincerely, Frank Pejack Public Liaison, Gun Owners of America [/i]
Link Posted: 5/21/2003 1:23:52 PM EDT
That is a short-sighted and stupid view by GOA concerning Hatch. It was precisely because Hatch offered an alternative to the even harsher bills the Dems brought to the Senate that the vote on both bills was split and neither one passed. If anybody thinks Hatch really favors that type of law, then they should explain how it hasn't been reintroduced since that event. GOA would rather penalize Hatch for being doctrinally impure than congratulate him for getting results in the real world.
Link Posted: 5/21/2003 1:53:54 PM EDT
Well then how would you do it? It seems difficult to take into account the fact and the intent. That is hard to know sometimes.
Link Posted: 5/21/2003 2:35:38 PM EDT
Well, I don't think you have to be a political genius to discern intent here. Hatch has a history of 20 pro-gun votes prior this bill. After this bill he never introduces it again, even though it came pretty close to passing in 1999. I understand why GOA doesn't want to rely on on subjective judgements to heavily, especially given the trouble the NRA has had with a system that relies more heavily on questionable subjective judgements. At the same time by failing to make even the most meager common sense subjective judgements, they have dropped Hatch (a key person if you want to stop or pass gun legislation since he is the Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee) to C- based on a single vote that actually saved us from some really bad legislation.
Link Posted: 5/21/2003 3:07:23 PM EDT
I agree that not taking the obvious into account is "no compromise", but that is the stated position of the GOA - "No Compromise". Maybe there are problems sometimes with the "no compromise" position of the GOA. It is easy to look at the GOA rating with your own intelligence and know that the rating is based on their vote. You often have no idea what the NRA rating is based on.
Link Posted: 5/22/2003 6:24:11 AM EDT
Here is another reply received from the GOA. Mr Velleco requested that I post this to the thread. [i] David, I've been following the conversation regarding the GOA rating of Sen. Hatch. Mr. Roberts makes two assumptions in his criticism of our grade for Hatch. 1. That the Dem-led gun control package of 1999 could not be defeated without a compromise substitute, and, 2. that it was a given that the compromise would kill both versions of the bill without an intense, year-long lobbying effort by GOA members and supporters against the Hatch substitute. I don't agree with either. If compromise were an effective method of killing anti-gun bills, why did it not work on Brady (which passed only when the waiting period 'sunset' in favor of the instant check) or the semi-auto ban (which passed only when the ban itself sunset; the rest of that onerous law remains on the books even if the ban expires)? In fact, were it not for the capitulation of former Sen. Bob Dole on Thanksgiving weekend of 1993, we might still be debating Brady today. The record is clear. The gun control laws on the books today are the result of the anti-gunners coming to pro-gun side to see how much it's willing to accept. This is how much gun control GOA will accept: NONE. When the other side pushed its gun control package in 1999, what would have happened if Sens. Hatch, Lott and others, instead of introducing a compromise bill, simply took the floor and said, "We will not accept any gun control, period."? To the contrary, Hatch, Lott, Frist and Cochran voted AGAINST Sen. Smith's filibuster to halt the progress of the compromise bill that had already passed! At that point, it went to a House-Senate conference committee. As to why Sen. Hatch has not reintroduced such measures, perhaps his electoral experience of 2000 influenced his decision. In the Republican convention, which should have been a formality in Hatch's case, he needed 60% to avoid a primary challenge. He received 61%. It brings to mind the old saying of the late Sen. Everett Dirksen: "When I feel the heat, I see the light." Thank you for your support, and your efforts to preserve liberty in this country. Sincerely, John Velleco Director of Federal Affairs Gun Owners of America[/i]
Link Posted: 5/22/2003 7:50:41 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/22/2003 7:52:14 AM EDT by The_Macallan]
Thanks [b]Magic[/b] for alerting GOA to this discrepancy in ratings. And I'd like to thank [b]Mr. Pejack[/b] and [b]Mr. Velleco[/b] for their insights into how GOA determines ratings. I understand better their logic in determining our Congresscritters' positions and evaluating their stances on gun control. Understanding that they are more interested in a Congresscritter's recent voting [u]pattern[/u] as well as that member's willingness to support weakend/compromise actions rather than just straight up/down votes as Brady does, the GOA ratings represent a different avenue of insight into Congresscritters' positions. I will continue to use the GOA ratings as a guide and educational tool in learning about our [s]masters[/s] servants in Congress. And I will also use the Brady ratings as well to learn about particular votes. Thanks again for shedding some light on this. (BTW, I still think the rating for Hastert was a bit unfair)
Link Posted: 5/22/2003 8:35:25 AM EDT
Thanks GOA!!! No Compromise means.......[B]NO COMPROMISE!![/B] [SNOOPY]
Link Posted: 5/22/2003 8:38:55 AM EDT
SAY mAC, WOULD YOU HAPPEN TO KNOW THE NRA RATING FOR THOSE GUYS, AND HOW THEY GO ABOUT RATING THEM?? (sorry for the all caps, had lock on[:D])
Link Posted: 5/22/2003 8:44:08 AM EDT
Originally Posted By TheKill: Sensenbrenner is my neigboring district. What little I do know about him and his activities, which is NOT all encompassing: 1. He is a committee member (subcommittee on crime I think) and does alot behind the scenes for our cause, including killing bad stuff before it comes to a vote. 2. While he does compromise on occasion, it seems he always sticks to Constitutional principles. And when he comes out for something from the anti's, it is always in the form of something that might pass so he is modifying and cutting deals to take the most objectionable stuff out. He also occasionally has a take on a bill that hurts us but still makes sense in terms of other, unconsiderd issues. Sensenbrenner is a gentleman and a scholar.
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He's currently chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, and has the power to singlehandedly kill or advance any gun bill he chooses. The most recent example was his forcing a vote to pass the lawsuit immunity bill... He is consistantly pro-background-check, which accounts for half of the 6 bills listed, iirc... My take on the ratings? Hastert (Speaker) gets his rating from not being as visibly opposed as he could be (remember: this guy has the power to prevent any more gun control from coming to a vote in the House), and the rating considers his position AND his votes...
Link Posted: 5/22/2003 9:07:44 AM EDT
Link Posted: 5/22/2003 9:16:55 AM EDT
Originally Posted By liberty86: SAY mAC, WOULD YOU HAPPEN TO KNOW THE NRA RATING FOR THOSE GUYS, AND HOW THEY GO ABOUT RATING THEM?? (sorry for the all caps, had lock on[:D])
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I looked all over the NRA websites and their legislative action site too. I can't find where NRA ratings are. [b]Anyone from NRA got a link to their Congressional Ratings???????????[/b]
Link Posted: 5/22/2003 9:34:46 AM EDT
Originally Posted By The_Macallan:
Originally Posted By liberty86: SAY mAC, WOULD YOU HAPPEN TO KNOW THE NRA RATING FOR THOSE GUYS, AND HOW THEY GO ABOUT RATING THEM?? (sorry for the all caps, had lock on[:D])
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I looked all over the NRA websites and their legislative action site too. I can't find where NRA ratings are. [b]Anyone from NRA got a link to their Congressional Ratings???????????[/b]
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During the last election they had it posted in [i]American Rifleman[/i]. I, too, can not find them online.
Link Posted: 5/22/2003 9:41:13 AM EDT
Originally Posted By The_Macallan:
Originally Posted By liberty86: SAY mAC, WOULD YOU HAPPEN TO KNOW THE NRA RATING FOR THOSE GUYS, AND HOW THEY GO ABOUT RATING THEM?? (sorry for the all caps, had lock on[:D])
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I looked all over the NRA websites and their legislative action site too. I can't find where NRA ratings are. [b]Anyone from NRA got a link to their Congressional Ratings???????????[/b]
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IIRC the NRA does not list ratings for politicians on the website, they only mail tem out to members around election times. There was a reason for that and it was to me a stupid reason so i forgot it. Sorry about that.
Link Posted: 5/22/2003 9:41:38 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/22/2003 9:46:18 AM EDT by SHIVAN458]
[url=http://206.183.2.55/VoterInfo.asp]NRA's Voter Site[/url] They specifically say they are not going to divulge the ratings online, you will receive it via a mailer. [rolleyes] I just emailed them for a copy. Hopefully, I will receive it via an Abode .pdf, if not I will scan it in when I get it. Ed
Link Posted: 5/22/2003 9:56:14 AM EDT
"As for the role of neo-conservative and Republican elements in this unholy alliance, it's easy to understand why they protect NRA's failed leadership: They want our money, our A-ratings, our endorsements, and our grassroots support, but they don't want to make the tough votes required to earn them. So they applaud Wayne LaPierre's "mainstream" positions like federally mandated InstaCheck - the same Wayne LaPierre who himself was widely denounced as an extremist for referring to federal officers as "jackbooted thugs"! Writer David Brock, admitted repentant political hit man for the right, made it clear that protecting the Republican Party was a prime motive for his American Spectator piece which smeared the NRA reform camp (note that letters to the Spectator exposing the smear were never printed - so much for accuracy and fairness in the neo-con media). That's why NRA leaders are so opposed to putting an end to ILA's penchant for giving A ratings to legislators who vote for gun control. Republican politicos were mobilized out of fear that straw man Neal Knox and other reform-minded Directors would end their free ride. Never mind that NRA would be far more effective once it was no longer married to one party and began seriously enticing Democrats and disciplining sellout Republicans. Your word was given in September, 1996 that the motion to stop ILA from giving A's to legislators who trample on gun rights would come before the Board for a vote in May. It did not, but you publicly committed in May to bring it up in September. You've frequently broken your word before, and I expect you'll break it this time. I urge Directors to hold you to it and pass the motion."- [url=keepandbeararms.com/information/XcIBViewItem.asp?ID=714]NRA Board of Directors Resignation Letter from C. Russell Howard, August 12, 1997[/url]
Link Posted: 5/22/2003 10:41:55 AM EDT
You know, the real problem most of us have with this rating system is pretty simple to explain. Most of us want to elect people into positions that have the same sense of values that we do. We expect that someone we support would never vote for anti-gun legislation. The GOA on the other hand is much more pragmatic. They use the carrot and stick method to deal with congresscritters. When the critter does what they want, they get a carrot, when they do something stupid, they get the stick.
Link Posted: 5/22/2003 11:56:33 AM EDT
Please allow this proud member to direct your attention to: [url]http://www.gunowners.org/[/url]
Link Posted: 5/22/2003 2:40:14 PM EDT
When the other side pushed its gun control package in 1999, what would have happened if Sens. Hatch, Lott and others, instead of introducing a compromise bill, simply took the floor and said, "We will not accept any gun control, period."?
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Well I don't have a crystal ball; but here is [url=www.opensecrets.org/news/guns/vote_sen.htm]OpenSecrets.org record of the Senate vote[/url]. The first vote is the Lautenberg bill originally proposed. The second is for the compromise proposal (24hr check). The third and final vote is for a 3-day amalgamation of the first 2 bills. GOA does have a point in that Lott, Hatch et al could have killed the bill in the Senate had they really wanted to; but apparently lacked the desire to take the heat for it come election time. At the same time, it is pretty clear from the record that the Republicans in the Senate were counting on the House to kill this bill for them so they wouldn't have to take the heat. Not real relevant to the conversation at hand but found this interesting quote while doing the research for the above: "Mr. TANCREDO. Mr. Speaker, my colleague from Colorado a little bit ago took the floor this morning to bemoan the fact that this Congress has done nothing, she says, this House has done nothing to pass gun control legislation. I must remind both her and the American people that, in fact, a comprehensive gun control bill was on the floor of this House last year, H.R. 2122. It did, in fact, have provisions to close the gun show loophole. It instituted a juvenile Brady. There was a ban on the importation of high-capacity clips. It mandated trigger locks. It was a comprehensive piece of legislation. It failed on this floor by a vote of [b]198 Democrat no votes[/b] to 82 Republican no votes. Now, why did this happen? It happened, Mr. Speaker, because in fact, with all the rhetoric aside, [b]what the minority party wants here is not a solution to this problem but an issue in the next campaign.[/b]" Hopefully the Dems will adopt the same attitude towards the AW ban (and based on McCarthy's bill it looks like they are)
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