July 25, 2013
For Immediate Release: July 26, 2013
Contact: Laura Keehner Rigas, (202) 347-9388, [email protected]
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The American Conservative Union (ACU) today announced its second annual ACU Ratings of the Colorado General Assembly, honoring the Centennial State’s true conservatives. The nation’s oldest and largest grassroots conservative organization began a new initiative to expand the highly touted ACU Congressional Ratings program to state legislatures, grading members on their votes on key conservative issues. The Colorado 2013 State Legislative Ratings guide is now available online at conservative.org.
“On behalf of the American Conservative Union, I am pleased to announce the winners of our 2013 State Legislative Ratings for members of the Colorado General Assembly,” said ACU Chairman Al Cardenas. “For 40 years ACU has set the gold standard for Congressional ratings, and we are now able to offer that same level of transparent information to the voters of Colorado so they can hold their elected officials accountable at the state level as well. In our second year rating the State, we applaud conservatives in the Colorado General Assembly who continue to fight for reducing government regulations and subsidies, voting integrity, and against draconian restrictions on Second Amendment rights.”
In 2011, the American Conservative Union launched a new initiative to bring its annual Ratings of Congress – considered the gold standard of conservative voter education guides – to the state level, issuing inaugural ratings of state legislators in five battleground states: Colorado, Florida, Nevada, North Carolina, Ohio and Virginia. Last year, ACU graded state legislators in 15 critical states and this year they are expanding their ratings to 20 states.
The ACU Ratings of the Colorado General Assembly will include scores for each individual member in both the State Senate and House of Representatives, a description of the votes scored and lists of members receiving special recognition as “Defenders of Liberty,” “ACU Conservatives,” or “True Liberals of the Centennial State.”
The ACU tracks a wide range of issues before state legislatures to determine which issues and votes serve as a clear litmus test separating those representatives who defend liberty and liberal members who have turned their backs on our founding principles – constitutionally limited government, individual liberty, free markets, a strong national defense and traditional values. The votes selected for our Colorado Legislative Ratings were chosen to create a clear ideological distinction among those casting them.
ACU today recognized the winners of the “Defender of Liberty” award, given to those members of the Colorado General Assembly who were present and cast a vote for each adjudicated roll call and scored 100 percent on the ACU 2013 State Legislative Ratings. In the House of Representatives, the recipients are Perry Buck, Justin Everett, Chris Holbert, Stephen Humphrey, Janak Joshi, Lois Landgraf, Polly Lawrence, Dan Nordberg, Lori Saine, Amy Stephens, Spencer Swalm, Libby Szabo, James D. Wilson, and Jared Wright. In the State Senate, the recipients are David Balmer, Randy L. Baumgardner, Bill Cadman, Kevin Grantham, Ted Harvey, Owen Hill, Kent D. Lambert, Kevin Lundberg, Vicki Marble, Scott W. Renfroe, and Mark Scheffel.
The winners of the “ACU Conservative” award – given to those members who scored 80 percent or higher – in the House of Representatives are Kathleen Conti, Don Coram, Brian DelGrosso, Timothy Dore, Carole Murray, Clarice Navarro, Ray Scott, Jerry Sonnenberg, Kevin Priola, Bob Rankin, and Mark Waller. In the State Senate, the recipients are Greg Brophy, Larry Crowder, and Steven King.
The members who scored an atrocious “zero” on the ratings, earning “True Liberals of the Centennial State” awards, are – in the House of Representatives – John W. Buckner, Lois Court, Crisanta Duran, Thomas “Tony” Exum, Mark Ferrandino, Rhonda Fields, Randy Fischer, Mike Foote, Joann Ginal, Millie Hamner, Dickey Lee Hullinghorst, Daniel Kagan, Tracy Kraft-Tharp, Jeanne Labuda, Pete E. Lee, Claire Levy, Jenise May, Elizabeth “Beth” McCann, Jovan Melton, Dominick Moreno, Dan Pabon, Cherylin Peniston, Brittany Pettersen, Dianne Primavera, Paul Rosenthal, Su Ryden, Joseph A. Salazar, Sue Schafer, Jonathan Singer, and Angela Williams. In the State Senate the recipients are Irene Aguilar, Morgan Carroll, Angela Giron, Lucia Guzman, Rollie Heath, Evie Hudak, Michael Johnston, Matt Jones, John Kefalas, John P. Morse, Linda Newell, Jeanne Nicholson, Gail Schwartz, Pat Steadman, Nancy Todd, and Jessie Ulibarri.
Founded in 1964, the ACU represents the views of Americans who are concerned with economic growth through lower taxes and reduced government spending and the issues of liberty, personal responsibility, traditional values and national security. ACU first began rating members of Congress on key conservative voting issues in 1971, and since then their ratings system has become the most important conservative measuring stick in American politics.
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