Ninety-three percent! Ninety-five percent! The Tillis campaign eagerly throws those numbers out as a way of “proving” how conservative their man is.
Those figures actually come from a site called FiveThirtyEight.com, which was once owned by The NY Times but is now an ESPN property. It’s run by a liberal Democrat named Nate Silver, and uses statistical analysis to examine American politics.
Let’s start off with an illustration of the credibility — or lack of — for fivethirtyeight.com. Here was Silver’s prediction — as of election day 2016 — of who was going to win The White House:
That’s right. ON ELECTION DAY, Silver was predicting that Hillary had a 71% probability of winning the presidency. And Thom and his team want us to have faith in this guy’s numbers?
Silver has got one study that appears to illustrate how loyal various members of Congress are to the Trump White House. It’s not a measure of conservatism. It’s a measure of how often you vote in a way that aligns with The White House’s position.
(I hate to break it to you. Trump has done a lot of good things. But he’s NOT a doctrinaire conservative. Tariffs, for instance, are not conservative. So, you can disagree with him and still have a conservative voting record.)
Okay,let’s translate. The 115th Congress was 2017-2019. We are now IN the 116th Congress. Check out his predicted scores. Ol’ Nate apparently was expecting Tillis to throw Trump under the bus a whole lot more.
The 93 being quoted in Tillis ads is his “career score.” It’s the average of the two from the 115th and 116th. The 95 that he mentions in interviews is his loyalty score for the last Congress. The real story here is that his loyalty to Trump has dropped dramatically from the last session to THIS SESSION.
If you want to really see some accurate measurements of conservatism, check out: The Club For Growth, Heritage Action, and Conservative Review.
Conservative Review rates Tillis at 38% (grade of F) on their 1-100 conservatism scale. In fact, they rate Thom Tillis as the most liberal Republican in the North Carolina delegation to DC. In fact, if you rank the entire US Senate based on their conservatism scores, Tillis comes in at #41.
Heritage Action rates Tillis 59% (grade of F) on their 1-100 conservatism scale. According to Heritage Action, the average score for a Senate Republican is 69 percent. So, our guy is below average.
The Club For Growth rates Tillis at 67% on their 1-100 conservatism scale. When you rank the entire Senate based on conservatism scores, Tillis is 41st out of 100.
So, while Theam Tillis seeks to sell us snake oil peddled by an in the tank liberal Democrat who believed Hillary was going to be president right up to the bitter end, there are quite a few others telling us the cold, hard truth about him.