The 2019 General Assembly session drew to a close this week, but a leading national conservative group has just completed an analysis of the 2018 session. The unsurprising verdict of the American Conservative Union: the legislature isn’t very conservative.
The ACU used 27 House votes and 26 Senate votes from 2018 to rate lawmakers. Ten Republican legislators – all in the House – racked up scores of 90 percent or better. Twenty Democratic senators and 38 delegates got scores of 10 percent or less – and were dubbed the “Coalition of the Radical Left.”
The average score in the state Senate was 26 percent; Democrats’ average was 9 percent, while the GOP average was 65 percent. The highest scoring Democratic was then-Sen. James N. Mathias Jr. of the Lower Shore, with 19 percent. The lowest scoring Republican was Anne Arundel Sen. Edward Reilly, with a 54 percent score.
In the House, the overall average score was 35 percent – 10 percent for Democrats and 81 percent for Republicans. The highest scoring Democrat was Anne Arundel Del. Edward S. Carey at 26 percent. The lowest scoring Republican was then-Del. Robert L. Flanagan of Howard County, who rung up a 44 percent score.
The ACU also weighed in on the state’s congressional delegation for its 2018 votes. Not surprisingly, the state’s lone Republican, Rep. Andrew P. Harris, was awarded a 96 percent score. The Democrats’ scores ranged from 12 percent (then-Rep. John K. Delaney) to 4 percent (Rep. John P. Sarbanes).