Voting Scorecard: McCain Missing in Action for Middle Class
by James Parks, Mar 19, 2008
Yet another voting record shows the two Democratic presidential candidates, Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama, voted to help those caught in the middle-class squeeze of stagnant wages and rising prices every chance they got, while Republican John McCain was missing in action for the middle class. The AFL-CIO earlier this month released the final 2007 U.S. House and Senate Voting Records, which tracks 19 Senate votes and 24 House votes from the first session of the 110th Congress.
The Drum Major Institute for Public Policy (DMI) last week released its TheMiddleClass.org 2007 Congressional Scorecard, which evaluates members of Congress on their votes on key legislation that affects the middle class. According to DMI, Clinton and Obama each received an “A+” rating. But McCain was the only member of the Senate to receive an “incomplete” because he missed a majority of the graded votes.
Says DMI Executive Director Andrea Batista Schlesinger:
When it came to doing something about the middle class, Senator McCain simply wasn’t there for them.
Overall, just 62 percent of representatives and 56 percent of senators received a “C” or better on the DMI scorecard, a much-improved record from the Republican-controlled Congresses of the decade. Thirty-four senators and 199 representatives received “A” grades. On the other hand, one-third of all representatives and nearly 40 percent of all senators earned “F” grades.
The middle-class squeeze is a recurring theme among members of Congress, all of whom assert their interest in alleviating some of the burdens faced by the middle class and those struggling to earn their way into it. If that commitment was universally genuine, 99 percent of Congress would have received an “A” this year. Clearly, that did not happen and it was the current and aspiring middle class who suffered for it.
The Democratic majority scored some key wins for the middle class. After more than a decade of Republican roadblocks in Congress and Bush administration opposition to raising the pay of millions of the nation’s lowest-paid workers, Congress passed and President Bush signed a minimum wage bill. The Democratic Congress also improved college affordability and addressed other key issues.
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Tags: McCain , Obama , Clinton , Middle Class , Voting , AFL-CIO
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