Titus scores as conservative


CARSON CITY -- Outgoing Senate Minority Leader Dina Titus, D-Las Vegas, now a candidate for Congress, cast more votes for conservative positions during the 2007 Legislature than some key Republicans, according to an analysis released today.

Carson City blogger and political analyst Chuck Muth tracked how senators voted on 28 key bills. He also recorded the votes of Assembly members on 25 bills.

Titus, received a 50 score from Muth, compared with a 43 for Senate Majority Leader Bill Raggio, R-Reno.

The higher the score, the more conservative the legislator, according to his analysis.

"We were shocked," said Muth of results that showed Titus and other Democratic senators voted more conservatively than some Republicans.

Muth said some of the results showed more regional than ideological differences. Democratic senators' scores were affected by votes against bills sought by Northern Nevada Republicans that would have placed local tax increase questions before voters.

"It wasn't for philosophical reasons," Muth said. "It was regional. The south wasn't going to let the north try to raise taxes."

Titus seemed to welcome Muth's assessment of her voting record.

"It puts a hole in the thinking of people who say I'm pro-tax and too liberal for Nevada," she said. "All these rural counties were against taxes during the election campaign, then they went to their legislators and asked for tax increases. They wanted it both ways."

Muth noted how legislators voted on tax increases, government regulation and bills he considered government intrusion into business and personal matters.

Sen. Steven Horsford, D-Las Vegas, who replaced Titus as minority leader, received a 46 score, also better than Raggio. Sen. Randolph Townsend, R-Reno, and Sen. Dennis Nolan, R-Las Vegas, scored of 36.

Muth said Republicans have only themselves to blame if they received low scores.

Two Republican lawmakers did receive the overall highest scores in the Senate. Sens. Bob Beers and Barbara Cegavske, both R-Las Vegas, received scores of 68, making them the most conservative members.

In the Assembly, the top scores of 80 were earned by Republicans Bob Beers of Henderson, Ty Cobb of Reno and James Settelmeyer of Gardnerville.

Former Assembly Minority Leader Garn Mabey, R-Las Vegas, received a 60 score, equal to Heidi Gansert of Reno who replaced him as minority leader.

The differences between the two parties was more pronounced in the Assembly. Eighteen Democrats received the lowest scores of 20. They included David Parks and Morse Arberry, both of Las Vegas, and Sheila Leslie of Reno.

Assembly Speaker Barbara Buckley and Majority Leader John Oceguera, both D-Las Vegas, received scores of 24.

By contrast, the 40 score received by Assemblyman Pete Goicoechea, R-Eureka, was the lowest Republican score in the Assembly.

Muth is president of Citizen Outreach and the former executive director of the American Conservative Union and former national chairman of the Republican Liberty Caucus. He operates chuckmuth.com, a blog on which he comments on Nevada politics.

Contact Capital Bureau Chief Ed Vogel at evogel@reviewjournal.com or 775-687-3901.

POLITICAL ASSESSMENT CROSSES PARTY LINES

The higher the score, the more conservative the legislator in this examination of lawmaker votes during the 2007 legislative session conducted by conservative political analyst Chuck Muth.

SENATE

68 -- Bob Beers and Barbara Cegavske

57 -- Joe Heck

54 -- Terry Care and Warren Hardy

50 -- Mike Schneider, Dina Titus, Maurice Washington and Valerie Weiner

46 -- Steven Horsford, Bernice Matthews and Mike McGinness

43 -- Mark Amodei, Maggie Carlton and Bill Raggio

39 -- Dean Rhoads

36 -- Bob Coffin, Dennis Nolan and Randolph Townsend

32 -- John Lee and Joyce Woodhouse

ASSEMBLY

80 -- Bob Beers, James Settelmeyer and Ty Cobb

79 -- Chad Christensen

68 -- Ed Goedhart

64 -- Lynn Stewart

56 -- Joe Hardy and Valerie Weber

60 -- Garn Mabey and Heidi Gansert

52 -- Tom Grady, John Marvel and Francis Allen

44 -- John Carpenter

40 -- Pete Goicoechea

28 -- Mo Dennis

24 -- Barbara Buckley, David Bobzien, Marcus Conklin, Jerry Claborn, Harry Mortenson, Harry Munford, John Oceguera and James Ohrenschall

20 -- Bernie Anderson, Kelvin Atkinson, Morse Arberry, Susan Gerhardt, Joe Hogan, William Horne, Ruben Kihuen, Marilyn Kirkpatrick, Ellen Koivisto, Sheila Leslie, Mark Manendo, Kathy McClain, David Parks, Bonnie Parnell, Peggy Pierce, Tick Segerblom, Rosemary Womack and Debbie Smith

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