2017 Wyoming Scores – General Session

2017 Wyoming Scores – General Session

Principles of Liberty Bill Analysis Process

At Principles of Liberty, our goal is to focus the conversation on, “What is the proper role of the state government, and what is the best way to execute that role?” We clearly identify our core principles, we provide free training classes around the state to explain those principles and how we apply them to legislation, and we engage with volunteers, legislators, lobbyists, activists and others to analyze legislation proposed at the Wyoming state capitol in real time during our state legislative session.

When analyzing a bill, we go to great lengths to ensure we understand that bill inside and out. We review the bill multiple times. We read all the statutes associated with that bill. If necessary we reach out to legislators, lobbyists, and anyone else who might have additional information about the bill or the “backstory” behind it.

We also strive to publish our analysis of a bill before our legislators vote on it. We don’t play a “gotcha!” game of cherry-picking bills and rating them after the fact. This year we published analyses on 45 bills. Why 45? We analyzed more than 45 bills but only published analyses on the bills we had the resources to thoroughly analyze prior to the vote in third reading (the vote that counts in our scores this year). We analyzed as many bills as we could, and we look forward to seeing the number of bills we analyze grow in subsequent years. If you want to see us publish more bills, we encourage you to attend one of our classes in the fall where you’ll receive training to equip you to become a volunteer analyst! Remember that your legislator may not have voted on every single bill that we rated (for example: if the bill died in the House, your Senator did not have the opportunity to vote on it), so if you have questions about how a legislator voted on a particular bill, we encourage you to ask us or your legislator.

Principles of Liberty End of Session Scorecard

At the end of each state legislative session, Principles of Liberty (POL) collects legislator vote data on the bills that we evaluated during the session. We typically evaluate a legislator’s votes in committee as well as his or her votes on third reading (the final vote taken before a bill passes out of the chamber). This year, we are only counting votes in third reading because one of POL’s goals is to publish our analysis of a bill before a legislator votes on it. Part of our learning curve this year was finding out how to anticipate the committee scheduling process so that we could prioritize our bill analysis in a way that would allow us to publish our analysis on a bill before that bill was heard in committee. This year we weren’t able to get all of our bill analyses published before the bills were heard in committee, so we are not including committee votes in legislator’s scores this year.

At Principles of Liberty, these “scores” are simply a byproduct of what we do—they are not our reason for what we do. Our goal is to generate discussion about the role of government, and this is simply another tool to help us do so. Our “scores” simply convey the percentage of the time that your legislator voted in agreement with our conclusions about the bills we rated.

One final word on these results from the 2017 legislative session: they are not curved in any way. They are raw scores that reflect the percentage of the time that your legislator voted “yes” on bills that POL said support our principles, and “no” on bills that POL said oppose our principles. We don’t expect anyone in politics to agree 100% of the time. These scores are helpful in identifying trends and making relative comparisons. They are not absolute indicators of “good” or “bad” legislators.

Summary

If you look at how we define our principles (located on our website), look at our explanations of the bills we rated, and find that in general you agree with our view on the role of government, then we hope these scores will provide you with a starting point for productive discussions with your legislators. Since we provide these scores as a tool for discussion, if you have a question about your legislator’s score we encourage you to ask them personally about their votes! If you agree with us on some bills but not on others, or if you want to see how your legislator voted on a particular bill and need help finding that information, send us an email and we’d be happy to help you. If you disagree with our principles or have questions about our methodology (we teach classes where we explain our principles and how we analyze bills!), feel free to reach out to us any time. Whether we agree or disagree at the end of the day, if we’re discussing what the proper role of government should be and whether our state legislators are executing that role then we are accomplishing our mission at Principles of Liberty.

We hope these numbers encourage you to discuss Free People, Free Markets, and Good Government in our great state!

State House:

Rank Score Last Name County
1 82.2% Gray Natrona
2 81.4% Halverson Lincoln/Sublette/Teton
3 81.0% Lone Laramie
4 80.9% Jennings Sheridan
5 80.0% Edwards Campbell
6 77.8% Steinmetz Goshen
7 74.5% Winters Big Horn/Hot Springs/Fremont/Park
8 73.3% Biteman Sheridan
8 73.3% Blackburn Laramie
10 71.8% McKim Lincoln
11 71.1% Piiparinen Uinta
12 68.9% Miller Fremont
13 68.1% Salazar Fremont
14 64.4% Greear Big Horn/Washakie
15 64.4% Loucks Natrona
16 62.2% Laursen Park
17 62.2% Madden Johnson/Sheridan
18 62.2% Wilson Laramie
19 61.4% Allen Fremont
20 60.0% Baker Sweetwater
21 60.0% Hallinan Campbell
22 60.0% Hunt Niobrara/Weston/Goshen
23 60.0% Lindholm  Crook/Weston
24 55.8% Clausen Converse
25 55.6% Clem Campbell
26 54.5% Harshman Natrona
27 54.3% Olsen Laramie
28 53.3% Eyre Uinta
29 53.3% Zwonitzer Laramie
30 52.2% Burkhart Carbon
31 52.2% Larsen Fremont
32 52.2% Sommers Sublette
33 52.2% Walters Natrona
34 48.9% Court Park
35 47.8% Nicholas Laramie
36 42.2% Flitner Big Horn/Park
37 42.2% Kinner Sheridan
38 40.4% Pownall Campbell
39 40.0% Obermueller Natrona
40 39.0% MacGuire Natrona
41 38.6% Northrup Park
42 37.8% Blake Sweetwater
43 35.6% Crank Lincoln/Sweetwater/Uinta
44 35.6% Sweeney Natrona
45 33.3% Barlow Campbell/Converse
46 33.3% Eklund Laramie/Goshen
47 33.3% Furphy Albany
48 30.4% Kirkbride Platte/Converse
49 28.9% Brown Laramie
50 26.7% Bovee Natrona
51 25.5% Pelkey Albany
52 24.4% Haley Albany
53 22.2% Byrd Laramie
54 22.2% Connolly Albany
55 22.2% Dayton Sweetwater
56 21.7% Schwartz Teton
57 20.5% Freeman  Sweetwater
58 20.5% Paxton Carbon/Albany/Sweetwater
59 20.0% Gierau Teton
60 20.0% Henderson Laramie

State Senate:

Rank Score Last Name County
1 78.3% Bouchard Laramie/Goshen
2 76.1% Hicks Albany/Carbon/Sweetwater
3 76.1% Meier Goshen/Niobrara/Weston
4 75.6% Agar Big Horn/Fremont/Hot Springs/Park/Washakie
5 73.3% Case Fremont
6 65.2% Dockstader Lincoln/Sublette/Teton
7 64.4% Bebout Fremont
8 60.9% Scott Natrona
9 58.7% Perkins Natrona
10 57.1% Christensen Teton
11 56.5% Boner Converse/Platte
12 56.5% Kinskey Sheridan/Johnson
13 54.5% Driskill Crook/Campbell/Weston
14 50.0% Moniz Albany
15 47.8% Wasseburger Campbell/Converse
16 44.2% Burns Sheridan
17 43.5% Anderson Natrona
18 42.2% Ellis Laramie
19 41.3% Barnard Uinta
20 41.3% Nethercott Laramie
21 40.0% Coe Park
22 39.1% Peterson Big Horn/Park
23 37.0% Emerich Laramie
24 37.0% Landen Natrona
25 37.0% Rothfuss Albany
26 34.8% Anselmi-Dalton Sweetwater
27 34.8% Baldwin Lincoln/Sublette/Sweetwater/Uinta
28 32.6% Pappas Laramie
29 32.6% Von Flatern Campbell
30 30.4% Hastert Sweetwater

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