Get PJ Media on your Apple

The PJ Tatler

by
Bryan Preston

Bio

February 24, 2014 - 9:24 am

The Tea Party-friendly Club for Growth has released its annual scorecard for lawmakers. In Texas, Sen. John Cornyn faces primarying from three opponents, including GOP Rep. Steve Stockman. Stockman claims that he is representing the Tea Party, though no Tea Party group has endorsed him to date. One of Cornyn’s primary opponents, Dwayne Stovall, has earned a Tea Party endorsement.

Add to that, the fact that the Club for Growth rates Stockman as less conservative than Cornyn.

According to the Club’s scorecard, Cornyn is the 8th most conservative senator. He has a 93% conservative rating (88% lifetime). Over in the House, Rep. Stockman ranks 39th. That’s on a par with Cornyn’s ranking in the Senate, as there are fewer senators than representatives. But Stockman’s conservative rating comes in at 87%, six points less than Cornyn on the most recent congressional session, and 87% lifetime. That’s not a whole lot of daylight between the candidates. There may be some other reason or reasons to support one of more of Cornyn’s challengers, but voting records don’t support claims that Stockman is more conservative.

Just so readers know where I’m coming from, I don’t endorse in GOP primaries, though I may explain how I vote once I’ve voted. I have no objection in principle to primarying incumbent Republicans, in fact, it’s often a good thing. Power and Washington (or Austin, or the county seat) are seductive. Letting incumbents know that they can and will be primaried is a means of holding them accountable. Some incumbents richly deserve to be primaried and sent packing, taking their consultants with them. But I’m not in the “throw all incumbents out” camp, as not all incumbents are as bad as all other incumbents. Some of the are actually good, or at least less dangerous than others, and more qualified than some of their challengers. Likewise, not all challengers are challenging for noble reasons, and not all challengers are capable of holding things together well enough to win a general election. We have to be shrewd in choosing which incumbents we choose to primary, and which of their challengers deserve backing. Every movement of any size attracts false prophets before long. I’m not specifying that there is a false prophet in this race. I’m just noting that just as not all incumbents are automatically devils, not all challengers are angels.

Having heard a million speeches, I’ve become all too aware that anybody can say anything to get elected. That goes for incumbents and challengers alike, in all political parties.

 

Bryan Preston has been a leading conservative blogger and opinionator since founding his first blog in 2001. Bryan is a military veteran, worked for NASA, was a founding blogger and producer at Hot Air, was producer of the Laura Ingraham Show and, most recently before joining PJM, was Communications Director of the Republican Party of Texas.

Comments are closed.

Top Rated Comments   
I hold leadership to a standard that includes more than their voting record. For example. Cornyn and McConnell voted no on the disgraceful Senate comprehensive amnesty bill, but they both worked hard to shepherd the bill through the Senate.
38 weeks ago
38 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (4)
All Comments   (4)
Sort: Newest Oldest Top Rated
Cornyn is the 8th most conservative senator? Remember what they say about Christie -- that a man who is seen as conservative in New Jersey will be seen as liberal almost everywhere else.

Cornyn may be the 8th most conservative senator, but that's because "conservative" and "senator" are two words that do not go together. He is a liberal.
38 weeks ago
38 weeks ago Link To Comment
I hold leadership to a standard that includes more than their voting record. For example. Cornyn and McConnell voted no on the disgraceful Senate comprehensive amnesty bill, but they both worked hard to shepherd the bill through the Senate.
38 weeks ago
38 weeks ago Link To Comment
A point all too often overlooked. In fact, being in leadership affords pols the option of voting on controversial bills in such a way as to appear to agree with their constituents, all while ensuring the bills pass or fail according to their own, often opposite, preferences.
38 weeks ago
38 weeks ago Link To Comment
Heritage Action scorecard

Sen. John Cornyn 86%
Rep. Steve Stockman 92%

http://www.heritageactionscorecard.com/members

Sens. Ted Cruz and Mike Lee were each 100%
38 weeks ago
38 weeks ago Link To Comment
View All