Sunday, June 18, 2017

House RINO Index: 2017

2017 Oklahoma RINO Index House Version

  This year's House version of the 2017 Oklahoma RINO Index was drawn from the same list of 28 bills that the Senate Index was drawn from, with one exception, one of the log rolled tax increases was added before the list was boiled down to twenty bills.

  One legislator got all 29 votes right, Rep. Jason Murphey, next was Rep Tommy Hardin at three bad votes and two missed votes (half point each) and Rep. Mike Ritze at two bad votes and four missed votes, then Rep. Tom Gann at five bad votes and Rep Chuck Strohm with five bad votes and two missed votes.

  You can see last week's newsletter with the Senate RINO Index for a list of the bills and why they were bad for the majority of Oklahomans. Here are the bills that some of the top ten legislators voted wrong on.

HB 2131 which received six bad votes and one missed vote, and it was a bad bill that siphoned off 10% of the sales tax collected by the firms availing of this corporate welfare credit. Even though some of the top ten legislators voted for it the bill is bad enough to keep in the Index.

HB 2281, received seven bad votes and one missed vote and it was a soft on crime bill that reduced penalties on many crimes. There is another bad soft on crime vote so this bill was striken from the index.

SB 842, received six bad votes, it raided $60 million dollars from the Rainy Day Fund to reimburse tax credits that had stripped property taxes from local school districts. Instead of doing this they should have voted to remove the tax credits themselves. It was a bad bill but given we have to winnow down the list it got cut from the list. Only five or six legislators voted against the bill and it was mostly in the top five.

SB 860, received seven bad votes out of the top ten legislators. It is the bloated budget bill which some would argue had to be passed. By striking the bill it harms mostly the Democrats that voted against the bill in mass.

SB 867, received three bad votes from the top ten legislators. The top four voted against the bill which continued the ultra low gross production tax rate of 2% while surrounding states have kept it at 7 to 7.5%. While it was a bad bill it also wasn't a tax increase or fee increase so with the need to strike bills from the list. Mostly Democrats suffered from cutting this bill from the Index.

HB 2429 which received three bad votes from the top ten legislators. This is another extension of the low gross production oil and gas credit, a bill that in a normal year would be included on the index but given that it is a tax credit and not another tax increase of fee increase it was chopped off the index. Again mostly Democrats suffered, the top four legislators didn't vote for it,

HB 2306, received three bad votes including one from the second from the top legislator. It is a new fee on filing subpoenas in civil cases, not good but it falls upon those filing civil cases which are going to be the better off in society. And it is a fee for something done by the government, not a tax that hits everyone and with the need to drop some bills this one fit well. Once again the Democrats voted en mass against the bill so few were harmed other than the Democrats. Some butt hurt RINOs and their supporters like to claim the Index is skewed against liberal Repubicans but in fact the conservative Democrats lose the most points.

HB 2392, the increased pesticide fee increase. Only one legislator in the top ten voted for this bill but three missed the vote. It is a fee increase but it hits a small number of farmers and is less than one million dollars impact so this bill was stricken. A few normally liberal RINO Republicans found their No vote was wasted but this is the kind of bill that the more moderate RINOs like to vote on as their vote might be picked up by other voting indexes.

SB 786 is another soft on crime bill that lowers penalties on crimes. It received three bad votes and three missed votes in the top ten legislators. But this is the only soft on crime bill left so this bill stays.

SB 806 is a bill that forced dietary guidelines on day care centers, a Nanny State bill. It wasn't a good bill to vote for and two of the top ten legislators voted for it, both Democrats, so striking the bill hurts mostly Democrats and liberal Republicans as the RINOs use these sort of bills to try to claim they vote conservatively. As there are more important tax and fee increases this bill was stricken.

SB 765 is Senator Comrade Yen's tanning booth bill. Only two of the top ten legislators voted for it but once again this is the kind of bills that the RINOs like to vote against in an effort to maintain a shred of conservative voting record. A bad bill but as it doesn't increase fees or taxes it needs to be cut from the list.

And the results are that the top nine are all Republicans, with Rep. Shane Stone coming in at #10 as the first Democrat, with the last Democrat coming in at #58 of 101 total legislators with the bottom 43 scores all being Republican.

Why so many Democrats in the middle? Because they are so few and so out of power their strategy is to vote against tax increases and fee increases, something they normally would support. However, they didn't vote for these tax and fee increases so regardless of the motivation they were scored accurately.

The flip side is that the Republicans were hell bent on raising taxes and fees while continuing as many of the tax credits and even making new tax credits. So they rightfully earned their spot at the bottom of the Index.

There should be two files attached to this email, the House Index in PDF format and the Senate Index in PDF format.  Please share these far and wide, all we ask is that you attribute them to the Sooner Tea Party.

And here are the scores: