Scores Are In: Here’s How House Republicans Voted on Environmental Issues in 2013

Written by Katie Valentine

House Republicans voted in line with environmental interests on key environmental legislation an average of just 5 percent of the time in 2013, according to a new scorecard.

The scorecard, released each year from the League of Conservation Voters, tallied 13 Senate and 28 House votes on key energy, conservation and other environmental measures during the first session of the 113th Congress. It found that environmental voting scores for House Republicans have dropped from 17 percent in 2008 to 10 percent in 2012, and down again to 5 percent last year — a decline the LCV attributes to the influence of the Tea Party. The House GOP caucus’ score this year was the lowest they had ever received from the LCV, which has been publishing scorecards since 1970.

“The issue is that the tea party has been such a drag on the Republican party writ large,” Tiernan Sittenfeld, Senior Vice President of Government Affairs at LCV, said on a press call Tuesday.

Senate Republicans scored an average of 17 percent, with Senate Democrats scoring a 92 percent and House Democrats scoring 87 percent on average. The report found that, in particular, freshmen Democrats were “overwhelmingly pro-environment,” with 44 out of 50 of them voting to oppose a bill that would have legislatively approved the Keystone XL pipeline, and scoring an overall average of 88 percent.

Sittenfeld said that she hopes Congress can soon get back to the days of bipartisan support of clean air and water legislation of a few decades ago. She said that with polls that showed that, among young people, even those who don’t support the president approve of his climate action plan, she’s hopeful that sort of bipartisan support isn’t too far off.

The Scorecard isn’t the only report to rank the House of Representatives poorly on environmental issues. Last month, a report from Henry Waxman (D-CA) found that in 2013, the House voted in favor of anti-environment positions 109 times. According to Waxman’s report, the House voted 51 times to “protect the interests of the oil and gas industry at the expense of the environment and human health,” including voting to ramp up drilling on public lands and fast-track the approval process of the Keystone XL pipeline.

This post was originally published in ThinkProgress

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Jim Ven
Jim Ven1 years ago

thanks for the article.

Carrie-Anne Brown

thanks for sharing :)

Robert Hamm
Robert Hamm4 years ago

HAHAHAHAHAAHAH Dan B We dont have to try to make the R's look bad. They are doing that all on their own and doing a much better job than could be done here.

Jennifer H.
Jennifer H4 years ago

No surprise here.

Dan Blossfeld
Dan Blossfeld4 years ago

It appears that the entire purpose of this scorecard was to present Democrats in a better light than republicans. Looking at the 41 total votes, most were economic or procedural votes. 4 were for hurricane Sandy relief, 3 were for the farm bill, 2 were militray funding, and one was for a border fence. Many concerned whether the Army Corps of Engineers should have jurisdiction in cases. Ironically, support for the Corps was the pro-environmental vote, even though their past practices have been widely attacke by environmentalists (i.e. dredging). Granted there were a few genuine environmental issues, like offshore drilling, the Keystone pipeline, and power plant emissions, but the environmental aspects of many of other votes was not the key issue. Likewise, deciding which agency has authority, is more a bookkeeping issue, than true environmentalism. Are the proposed changes in federal flood insurance to tie premiums to flood risk really a top environmental issue? Seems like a highly partisan report to me.

Donna F.
Donna F4 years ago


Allan Yorkowitz
.4 years ago

Senate Democrates would vote against the Keystone pipeline. Yet, sitting members of the GOP are for it. Clearly each has their own agenda.

Allan Yorkowitz
.4 years ago

Half of the GOP voted with Obama's insanity. This in itself is disturbing.

Angela J.
Angela J4 years ago

Thank you.

Nelson Petrie
Nelson Petrie4 years ago

The Tea Party people and the Republicans are the two sides of the same coin. Both must be labeled insane. These people care two hoots for The environment.The Republicans simply work at the behest of the big coal,oil,gas and the fracking lobbies. These people will squeeze out everything from the soil of this country and make it sterile.You can see the way the rivers are being polluted, oil spills are taking pace, air pollution levels rising and above all how the income of these Republican crooks are shooting skywards. When they have drained this nation (and eventually the entire planet)of all its precious resources they'll have made a huge ship,call it 'Noah's Ark' and rocket into outer space. But I hope their space craft bursts into smithereens as the leave the earth's atmosphere. ONLY CRAZY FOOLS VOTE REPUBLICAN!