EXCLUSIVE: A new conservative group has formed with the purpose of analyzing the votes and policies of federal and state lawmakers and assigning them a grade 'based on the limited government principles of the U.S. Constitution.'
The group, the Institute for Legislative Analysis (ILA), describes its mission as 'advancing the limited government principles of the U.S. Constitution by increasing transparency within Congress and the 50 state legislatures' and uses what it calls a 'Limited Government Index' to calculate whether an individual lawmaker leans toward a larger role for government or a more limited one.
According to the ILA, the index assigns grades by using thousands of votes and roll calls from each individual legislator, including votes on amendments and procedural motions, leading to a 'much greater ability to pinpoint exactly where lawmakers stand across the full spectrum of issues.'
The large data set has allowed the group to develop a categorization system that constituents can view to find out their lawmaker's score across 10 different policy fields. The fields include national and local security, tax and fiscal, energy and environment, workforce and labor, law and scope of government, individual liberties, health care and regulations.
The ILA says this type of grading provides greater insight into an individual lawmaker's votes rather than a percentage score like those given by other rating groups. The higher the rating, the more limited the lawmaker treats the role of government; the lower the rating, the larger the lawmaker treats the role of government.
The group currently has detailed scores for every member of Congress, and it will be deploying the same system toward every member of all 50 state legislatures in the future.
Speaking with Fox News Digital, ILA President Fred McGrath and CEO Ryan McGowan said the new ratings index can provide crucial information to voters about their respective representatives in Congress and in state legislatures, and it would help them have all necessary information when deciding for whom to cast their vote.
'We created the ILA to build a legislative scorecard platform with only one agenda – measuring each lawmaker's adherence to the limited government principles of the U.S. Constitution,' McGowan said. 'By equipping the leading advocacy groups with our research and technology, more Americans will have the data needed to effectively hold their lawmakers accountable and make more informed decisions at the ballot box.'
McGrath added, 'The reality is a number of Americans don’t know who represents them – especially at the state level – let alone how their elected officials vote. Not only do scorecards educate voters on the key policies, but the transparency they provide significantly impacts the votes and policy positions of lawmakers.'
Click here to find your respective lawmakers' grade.