Most Conservative Legislators/Least Conservative Legislators

Lawmakers rated on 10 votes in Conservative Index

State Rep. Ben Loring, D-Miami, is the most liberal legislator in Oklahoma and Sen. Ervin Yen of Oklahoma City is the most liberal Republican, according to the Conservative Index published by the Oklahoma Constitution newspaper.

Yen, a physician, voted for the liberal side of nine of 10 bills on the index, including a pro-abortion vote. Loring miss three votes and cast a liberal vote on seven bills on the index.

This wasn’t a good year for conservatism.

The average scores for Tulsa area Republicans in the Senate dropped from 69 point historically to 52 points. For Oklahoma City area senators, the 2016 average score was 53 – 13 points lower than the 66 historic average.

There was a huge dip for Republican members of the House from the Tulsa area, too. They averaged 56 points in 2016, down from 70 point historically. For Tulsa Democrats in the House, the numbers went up with an average of 43 this year versus an historic average of 39

In Oklahoma City, Republican House members got an average of 50 points, down from 70 points historically. For Democrats in Oklahoma City, the averages actually rose from 31 points historically to 39 points in 2016.

After each legislative session for 38 years, the Oklahoma Constitution, with the help of the Oklahoma Conservative Political Action Committee, rates all senators and representatives on the basis of votes on 10 bills, which are judged to be conservative. Lawmakers can have input as to what bills are selected. Ten points are given for each conservative vote and a failure to cast a vote gets three points.

The index also provides a cumulative average score based on how the legislator scored in previous years.

“By examining this year’s score in relation to the cumulative average, the voting pattern of a particular legislator can be determined,” according to the Oklahoma Constitution newspaper. “While most score nearly the same, year after year, others trend upward or downward from their average. If your legislator is trending toward conservatism, please offer your encouragement and support. If your legislator is exhibiting a leftward trend, it is time to express your disappointment and suggest the need for a replacement if the trend is not reversed.

Readers should consider replacing those who scored 30 percent, or less, while giving close scrutiny to those who scored between 30 and 70.”

In the Tulsa area, Sen. Brian Crain got the worst score, 23, among Republicans and Crain has the worst average at 55. He is term limited.

Sen. Kevin Matthews has the lowest score among Tulsa area Democrats in the Senate with 46 and an average score of 35.

Broken Arrow has the most conservative senators, with Sen. Nathan Dahm at a perfect 100 score and an average of 98. Dahm is running for re-election and won his GOP primary on June 28. Sen. Bill Brown got an 80 score with an average at 81.

The closest Tulsa senator was Dan Newberry, who got a 53 score, with an average of 64. Sen. Gary Stanislawski of Tulsa got 50 points – 21 points lower than his average of 71.

Rep. David Brumbaugh, another conservative from Broken Arrow, got a 100 score with a 93 average. Rep. Mike Ritze, also of Broken Arrow, was close behind with 93 (with an 86 average).

Rep. Chuck Strohm led the way for Tulsa Republicans with 93 and an average of 97. Rep Ken Walker, also a Tulsa Republican, got a score of 73 and an average of 81. Walker was defeated in a GOP primary by newcomer Carol Bush on June 28.

Three Tulsa area Republican women, Rep. Pam Peterson, Jadine Nollan and Katie Henke, scored below 30 points on the index. Peterson, who is term limited, got 29 points, well below her average of 70. Nolan got 23 with an average of 58 and Henke got only 23 points, with an average of 48.

Peterson cast only one conservative vote – on a pro-life issue. She missed three votes and cast six liberal votes. Nollan cast two conservative votes for parental rights and a firearms amendment. She missed one vote and cast seven liberal votes. Henke cast two conservative votes – the same two as Nollan – and seven liberal votes. She missed one vote.

Tulsa Democrat Eric Proctor got a score of 66, which was higher than Republicans Henke, Nollan, Peterson, Rep. Glen Mulready, Rep. Weldon Watson, Rep. Michael Rogers, Rep. David Derby and Rep. Terry O’Donnell. Proctor has an average of 53. Rep. Jeannine McDaniel, who is term limited, was the lowest scoring Tulsa Democrat again with 26 (and a 19 average).

Here are summaries of the 10 bills on the index.

  1. Physician Performed Abortions, SB 1552 by Sen. Nathan Dahm, R-Broken Arrow, and Rep. David Brumbaugh, R-Broken Arrow
    This would have removed the medical license of any doctor who performs an abortion. It was approved in the House and Senate and vetoed by Gov. Mary Fallin. A yes vote was conservative.
  1. Parental Rights Immunization Act, HB 3016 by Rep. Randy Grau, R-Edmond, and Sen. Dahm
    This bill would have required health care providers to show the ingredients in each vaccine to obtain informed consent from the parent or other legal representative of the child before administering the vaccine. It passed the House and Senate and was vetoed by Fallin. An override attempt failed. A yes vote was conservative.
  1. State Constitutional Amendment on Firearms. HJR 1009 by Rep. Dan Fisher, R-El Reno, and Sen. Anthony Sykes, R-Moore
    The bill would ask voters to amend the state Constitution to make it harder to regulate guns. It was passed by the House 66-7 and the Senate 39-7. It returned to the House for consideration of Senate amendments. The House rejected the Senate amendments and the bill died in conference. A yes vote was conservative.
  1. School Financial Reporting, SB 945 by Sen. Gary Stanislawski, R-Tulsa, and Rep. Chuck Strohm, R-Jenks
    This bill would require the superintendent of each school board to present a monthly financial report of revenues and expenditures for each district fund at each regularly scheduled board meeting. The measure passed the Senate 40-2, but failed in a tie vote in the House 40-40. A yes vote was conservative.
  1. Article V Convention of the States, SJR 4 by Sen. Rob Standridge, R-Norman, and Rep. Gary Banz, R-Midwest City
    Under Article V of the U.S. Constitution, amendments to the Constitution can be proposed for ratification by the states in two ways. The first method requires a two-thirds vote of each house of Congress. The second method requires two-thirds of the states (34 of the 50 current states) to request a national constitutional convention to consider proposing amendments. Conservatives have been split on using this method, which has never been tried. Many conservatives argue that such a convention could not be limited and could result in a runaway convention, which proposes to replace our Constitution with a new document. This happened in the 1787 Constitution Convention, which was assembled to consider amendments to the Articles of Confederation. The real problem is not a lack of constitutional amendments, but the failure of the president and Congress to follow the current Constitution. The Oklahoma House approved a call for a Constitutional Convention by a vote of 57-33 and the Senate concurred by a vote of 30-16. The resolution does not require approval of the governor. It was filed with the Secretary of State on April 26. The resolution can be withdrawn by a future legislature if it is done before 34 states have requested a convention. A no vote was a conservative vote.
  1. State Capitol Building Bonds, HB 3168 by Speaker of the House Jeff Hickman, R-Fairview, and Senate President Pro Tem Brian Bingman
    The measure authorizes the state to issue up to $125 million in additional bonds to complete the Capitol Restoration Project. The bill brings the total price tag for renovating the State Capitol Building to $245 million. According to the state constitution, the issuing of bond debt must be approved by a vote of the people. The additional bond funding was approved by the House 51-43 and in the Senate 30-16. It was signed by Gov. Fallin. The no votes were conservative.
  1. Automated License Plate Readers, SB 359 by Sen. Corey Brooks, R-Washington, and state Rep. Ken Walker, R-Tulsa
    This bill would authorize law enforcement to use automatic license plate readers to find uninsured motorists. Privacy advocates have concerns that once the system is operational the law will be changed to allow the data to be retained and used for other purposes. The bill passed the Senate 34-10 and the House 52-39. Fallin signed the bill into law. The no votes were conservative.
  1. DNA Samples Upon Arrest, HB 2275 by Rep. Lee Denney, R-Cushing, and Sen. Clark Jolley, R-Edmond)
    This bill amends current law to allow DNA samples to be collected upon arrest for a felony crime. The bill requires a person’s DNA information to be expunged from the database if charges are dropped or if the defendant is not bound over for trial. But, privacy advocates are concerned that a simple change in the law will allow the DNA information to be retained. The bill passed the House 52-36 and the Senate 32-15. It was signed into law by Fallin. The no votes were conservative.
  1. Licensing of Music Therapists, HB 2820 by Rep. Lee Denney, R-Cushing, and Sen. Stephanie Bice, R-Oklahoma City
    The Music Therapy Practice Act will license “Music Therapists” who have completed the education and clinical training requirements established by the American Music Therapy Association. It passed the House 54-42 and the Senate 38-7. It was signed into law by Gov. Fallin. The no votes against the bill earn the conservative vote.
  1. Gender Pay Regulation, HB 2929 by Rep.Jason Dunning ton, D-Oklahoma City, and Sen. Kyle Loveless, R-Oklahoma City
    This legislation was aimed at pay discrimination, particularly against women. State law already bans wage discrimination against women, but no employer has ever been fined under the existing statute. The bill passed the Senate 39-8 and the House approved it. But, the Legislature adjourned before the Senate could vote again on the bill. The no votes against the bill earn the conservative vote.

Senate Scores

Republicans

2016/Career Average Score
100/98 Nathan Dahm, Broken Arrow
100/94 Anthony Sykes, Moore
93/79 Mark Allen, Spiro
90/85 Joe Silk, Broken Bow
80/81 Bill Brown, Broken Arrow
80/79 Josh Brecheen, Coalgate
80/73 Kyle Loveless, Oklahoma City
60/79 Greg Treat, Oklahoma City
60/67 Larry Boggs, Red Oak
60/67 Corey Brooks, Washington
60/62 Ron Sharp, Shawnee
53/68 Frank Simpson, Springer
56/62 Ralph Shortey, Oklahoma City
53/64 Dan Newberry, Tulsa
53/61 David Holt, Oklahoma City
50/75 Rob Standridge, Norman
50/71 Gary Stanislawski
50/69 Jason Smalley, Stroud
50/67 Clark Jolley, Edmond
50/64 Mike Mazzei, Tulsa
40/68 Marty Quinn, Claremore
40/65 Stephanie Bice, Oklahoma City
40/64 A.J. Griffin, Guthrie
40/63 John Ford, Bartlesville
40/63 Ron Justice, Chickasha
40/62 Bryce Marlett, Woodward
40/62 Kim David, Porter
40/60 Darcy Jech, Kingfisher
40/60 Mike Shultz, Altus
40/59 Brian Bingman, Sapulpa
40/58 Eddie Fields, Wynona
40/47 Roger Thompson, Okemah
36/57 Don Barrington, Lawton
33/61 Patrick Anderson, Enid
33/47 Jack Fry, Midwest City
30/60 Wayne Shaw, Grove
23/55 Brian Crain, Tulsa
13/45 Jim Halligan, Stillwater
10/40 Ervin Yen, Oklahoma City

Democrats

2016/Career Average Score
60/60 J.J. Dossett, Sperry
46/35 Kevin Matthews, Tulsa
40/26 Anastasia Pittman, Oklahoma City
36/28 Charles Wyrick, Fairland
33/26 John Sparks, Norman
30/36 Earl Garrison, Muskogee
30/29 Randy Bass, Lawton
30/20 Kay Floyd, Oklahoma City
20/33 Susan Paddack, Ada

Tulsa Metro Senate

Republicans

2016/Career Average Score
100/8 Nathan Dahm, Broken Arrow
80/81 Bill Brown, Broken Arrow
53/64 Dan Newberry, Tulsa
50/71 Gary Stanislawski, Tulsa
50/64 Mike Mazzei, Tulsa
40/68 Marty Quinn, Claremore
40/62 Kim David, Porter
40/59 Brian Bingman, Sapulpa
23/55 Brian Crain, Tulsa
52/69 Averages

Democrats

2016/Career Average Score
60/60 J.J. Dossett, Sperry
46/35 Kevin Matthews, Tulsa
53/47 Averages

House Scores

Republicans

2016/Career Average Score
100/100 Jason Murphey, Guthrie
100/93 David Brumbaugh, Broken Arrow
100/93 Paul Wesselhoft, Moore
93/97 Chuck Strohm, Jenks
93/86 Mike Ritze, Broken Arrow
90/96 Sally Kern, Oklahoma City
90/72 Steve Vaughn, Ponca City
86/94 Dan Fisher, El Reno
80/90 Travis Dunlap, Bartlesville
80/78 Kevin Calvey, Oklahoma City
80/71 John Bennett, Sallisaw
80/67 James Leewright, Bristow
80/62 Mark Lepak, Claremore
78/81 Bobby Cleveland, Slaughterville
76/76 Sean Roberts, Hominy
73/81 Ken Walker, Tulsa
73/78 Dennis Johnson, Duncan
70/77 John Jordan, Yukon
70/73 Tommy Hardin, Madill
69/73 Randy Grau, Edmond
66/62 Mark McBride, Moore
63/76 Randy McDaniel, Edmond
63/68 Todd Russ, Cordell
60/75 Scooter Park, Devol
60/60 John Peiffer, Mulhall
59/74 Charles McCall, Atoka
56/75 George Faught, Muskogee
56/65 Terry O’Donnell, Catoosa
53/82 Tom Newell, Seminole
53/76 David Derby, Owasso
53/67 Justin Wood, Shawnee
53/62 Michael Rogers, Broken Arrow
53/53 Kevin Wallace, Wellston
53/53 Weldon Watson, Tulsa
52/65 Mike Sanders, Kingfisher
50/63 Dustin Roberts, Durant
50/60 Jeff Coody, Grandfield
48/78 Josh Cockroft, Tecumseh
46/79 Jon Echols, Oklahoma City
46/76 Mark McCullough, Sapulpa
46/69 Marian Cooksey, Edmond
46/50 Casey Murdock, Felt
43/73 Dennis Casey, Morrison
40/76 Elise Hall, Oklahoma City
40/68 Glen Mulready, Tulsa
40/63 Earl Sears, Bartlesville
40/52 John Montgomery, Lawton
33/59 Harold Wright, Weatherford
33/57 Jeff Hickman, Fairview
32/61 Chad Caldwell, Enid
30/66 Gary Banz, Midwest City
30/63 Scott Martin, Norman
30/59 Todd Thomsen, Ada
30/58 Scott Biggs, Chickasha
30/58 Ann Coody, Lawton
29/70 Pam Peterson, Tulsa
29/61 Charlie Joyner, Midwest City
26/62 Pat Ownbey, Ardmore
23/64 Jason Nelson, Oklahoma City
23/58 Jadine Nollan, Sand Springs
23/55 Leslie Osborn, Mustang
23/48 Katie Henke, Tulsa
23/47 Chris Kannady, Oklahoma City
22/55 Dan Kirby, Tulsa
21/58 Mike Christian, Oklahoma City
20/56 Lisa Billy, Lindsey
19/42 Doug Cox, Grove
18/59 John Enns, Enid
13/58 Charles Ortega, Altus
13/53 Lee Denney, Cushing

Democrats

2016/Career Average Score
70/39 Ed Cannaday, Porum
66/53 Eric Proctor, Tulsa
63/52 Shane Stone, Oklahoma City
56/39 Brian Renegar, McAlester
53/53 Regina Goodwin, Tulsa
52/44 Steve Kouplen, Beggs
52/42 Richard Morrissette, Oklahoma City
52/24 Mike Shelton, Oklahoma City
50/33 George Young, Oklahoma City
49/32 Chuck Hoskin, Vinita
48/41 Mike Brown, Fort Gibson
46/44 Scott Inman, Oklahoma City
46/30 Cory Williams, Stillwater
43/46 James Lockhart, Heavener
42/33 Seneca Scott, Tulsa
40/44 Donnie Condit, McAlester
39/37 William Fourkiller, Stilwell
35/32 Jerry McPeak, Warner
33/43 Johnny Tadlock, Idabel
32/37 Benn Sherrer, Chouteau
30/36 Wade Rousselot, Wagoner
29/28 Jason Dunnington, Oklahoma City
28/34 Jerry Shoemaker, Morris
26/19 Jeannie McDaniel, Tulsa
23/46 David Perryman, Chickasha
23/46 R.C. Pruett, Antlers
23/15 Emily Virgin, Norman
20/22 Claudia Griffin, Norman
20/20 Cyndi Munson, Oklahoma City
9/20 Ben Loring, Miami

Tulsa Metro House Scores

Republicans

2016/Career Average Score
100/93 David Brumbaugh, Broken Arrow
93/97 Chuck Strohm, Jenks
93/86 Mike Ritze, Broken Arrow
80/62 Mark Lepak, Claremore
73/81 Ken Walker, Tulsa
56/65 Terry O’Donnell, Catoosa
53/76 David Derby, Owasso
53/62 Michael Rogers, Broken Arrow
53/53 Weldon Watson, Tulsa
46/76 Mark McCullough, Sapulpa
40/68 Glen Mulready, Tulsa
29/70 Pam Peterson, Tulsa
23/58 Jadine Nollan, Sand Springs
23/48 Katie Henke, Tulsa
22/55 Dan Kirby, Tulsa
56/70 Averages

Democrats

2016/Career Average Score
66/53 Eric Proctor, Tulsa
53/53 Regina Goodwin, Tulsa
42/33 Seneca Scott, Tulsa
30/36 Wade Rousselot, Wagoner
26/19 Jeannie McDaniel, Tulsa
43/39 Averages