Consumer Federation Of California Releases 2015 Scorecard For State Lawmakers

SACRAMENTO – The Consumer Federation of California (CFC) has released its 2015 Scorecard for State Legislators, which rates lawmakers on the votes they cast on key issues, including privacy, automobile safety, household toxics, truth in advertising, living wages, reform of the California Public Utilities Commission, and other consumer protection issues.

“This scorecard should help Californians evaluate how their lawmakers voted on consumer protection bills that affect our pocketbooks, our privacy, and our health and safety, but often get little news coverage,” said CFC Executive Director Richard Holober. “In 2015, most consumer victories were defensive. We stopped several bills designed to enhance corporate profits at the expense of everyday Californians. With Democrats holding strong majorities in the legislature, it is no surprise that both the best consumer protection bills and the worst attacks on consumer rights had Democratic authors.”

The Assembly as a whole posted an average pro-consumer score of 55 percent, and the Senate’s average was 66 percent. Democrats averaged a 69 percent score in the Assembly, and 82 percent in the Senate. Republicans averaged 33 percent in the Assembly, and 35 percent in the Senate.

None of the 52 Assembly Democrats, and just one of the 26 Senate Democrats, earned a perfect score of 100 percent. No Republican in either house exceeded a 57 percent pro-consumer score.

CFC graded non-votes as well as votes that were cast. When a lawmaker was in attendance but chose not to vote, his or her grade was based on that decision’s effect on the bill’s outcome.

CFC also assigns a Right or Wrong grade when a lawmaker introduces a key consumer bill or requests committee action on a matter of importance to the CFC, but does not have occasion to actually vote on the bill or action.

Also included in the scorecard are “lifetime” percentages, based on CFC scorecards issued each year and representing the key consumer votes by a lawmaker throughout his or her tenure in the Legislature.

Click here [PDF] to view the scorecard and a description of the legislation used to grade lawmakers.