A group of like-minded Republican senators has apparently lost a member. Is the conservative voting streak by Pat Roberts an election year conversion, or just a passing fad?
— Leroy Towns (@dltowns) May 22, 2014
FreedomWorks — whose motto is “Government fails. Freedom works.” — describes itself like this:
We are over 6 million Americans who are passionate about promoting free markets and individual liberty. Our members all share three common traits: a desire for less government, lower taxes, and more economic freedom.
For over a quarter century, FreedomWorks has identified, educated, and actuated citizens who are enthused about showing up to support free enterprise and constitutionally limited government.
So it’s good that Sen. Roberts is voting in favor of the goals of FreedomWorks. Economic freedom, free enterprise, and limited government are goals we need to work towards.
But: Until the last two years, Roberts’ score on the FreedomWorks scorecard followed the pattern of a group of well-known Republican senators: Thad Cochran, Lindsey Graham, Richard Lugar, Mitch McConnell, and John McCain. In some years this group voted well according to FreedomWorks’ criteria, but in many years their voting record was poor.
But this group of like-minded GOP senators has a renegade member. For 2013 and 2014 Pat Roberts’ score is markedly higher than the other members of this group. Roberts announced his intent to run for reelection in January 2013.
On the chart I’ve included records for Jim DeMint and Harry Reid to provide two examples of voting records that value — and disrespect — economic freedom, according to FreedomWorks.
Voters might want to consider who is the real Pat Roberts: The one that votes along with Mitch McConnell (even less supportive of economic freedom in some years)? Or the one that votes in favor of less government, lower taxes, and more economic freedom only when an election approaches?
You can investigate the FreedomWorks scorecards yourself. Click here to use the interactive visualization that plots senators individually, showing as many as you want. Click to add or remove senators.
Or, you may use the visualization that blends voting records on one chart.