Bipartisan or nonpartisan


Tom Reed’s professed view

I look forward to continuing bipartisan work with the Problem Solvers Caucus and my friend Rep Josh Gottheimer.–Rep. Tom Reed, facebook 4/26/2018

Bipartisan:  cooperation of two political parties that usually oppose each other’s policies.

Nonpartisan: not biased or partisan, especially toward any particular political group.

“Bipartisan” is no big deal. A unanimous vote to rename a post office is bipartisan. In our current congress, Republican leaders prefer to pass partisan bills with only Republican votes, following the Hastert Rule. When there aren’t enough Republican votes to pass a must-pass bill, then a bipartisan compromise is necessary. The compromise isn’t necessarily a good thing–a bad bill may be sweetened with goodies for the minority party.

When Tom Reed voted against the latest omnibus budget bill, he wasn’t being bipartisan–he wasn’t uniting with Democrats who also opposed the bill, but with far right Republicans who did as well.

Nonpartisan scarcely exists in today’s Congress–to be nonpartisan, one would need to be unaligned with any political party. Even independents in Congress lean toward one party or the other.  Foreign policy was once said to be nonpartisan or at least bipartisan, but no more.

Tom Reed directs our attention to his score for bipartisanship from the Lugar Center. Here’s what the scores given by the Lugar Center’s Bi-Partisan Index are based on. “The Bipartisan Index measures the frequency with which a Member co-sponsors a bill introduced by the opposite party and the frequency with which a Member’s own bills attract co-sponsors from the opposite party.” Clearly this is a meaningless measure:

  • One would need to know which bills figured in the score. Were they important and likely to pass by a narrow margin with bipartisan support?
  • One could easily manipulate one’s score by choosing bills to cosponsor. Deciding to cosponsor a bill is a relatively meaningless gesture–one could cosponsor a bill with no chance of passage.

Tom Reed’s voting record–votes with his party more than 90% of the time–shows that in spite of his campaign claims, he is not much bipartisan and nonpartisan not at all.

Click to access House%20Scores%20115th%20Congress%20First%20Session.pdf


About whungerford

* Contributor at where we discuss the politics, economics, and events of the New New York 23rd Congressional District (Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Chemung, (Eastern) Ontario, Schuyler, Seneca, Steuben,Tioga, Tompkins, and Yates Counties) Please visit and comment on whatever strikes your fancy.
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22 Responses to Bipartisan or nonpartisan

  1. josephurban says:

    WOW! Look at the photo of those mean extreme liberals! They look awful nasty. What do they want to do to America? What kind of awful, treacherous plans do they support?

    Some terrible things like: universal health care; strong but efficient military; consumer protection laws; fair campaign financing laws; sensible gun control regulations; protections for consumers against unfair lending practices; clean air and water for ourselves and future generations; equal opportunities and equal rights for all citizens; separation of church and state; fair trade ; a secure border using modern (not ancient ) technology; a tax code that does not give 83% of tax breaks to the top 1%; preserving Social Security…the list goes on.

    Look at those evil faces! They must be stopped! Vote for Tom Reed and end this extreme liberal attack on America !

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Carol says:

    Here is the data that the Lugar score people say they used for their scoring:
    I am in the process of analyzing that data.

    The true measure of Reed’s bipartisanship is his Trump score of 95.5% (which dropped from over 98% because he missed several votes) and the number of actual bills PASSED that he sponsored or cosponsored.

    Reed’s Trump score:

    Liked by 1 person

  3. josephurban says:

    Keep this in mind. No one can vote on a “bipartisan” bill unless speaker Ryan and Senate majority leader McConnell agree to bring it up for a vote. I suspect that many GOPers and Dems would be happy to vote for bipartisan solutions, but the leadership will not allow it.


  4. Carol says:



  5. whungerford says:

    Carol, I hope you will share your result.

    Here is an example of a bipartisan bill; it passed 383 to 13. Seven Republicans and six Democrats voted NAY.

    Here is a brief summary courtesy of Rep. Capuano (D-MA):

    Today the House voted on H.R. 4, the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018. This legislation authorizes the programs, policies and administration of the FAA for five years. It includes provisions to help airports upgrade and improve facilities. It also contains passenger protections such as prohibiting airlines from bumping a traveler if she or he has already boarded the plane and banning cell phone calls on flights. H.R.4 requires that private rooms be available for nursing mothers at commercial airports. It mandates that all airlines provide passengers with a simple document detailing their rights with respect to baggage, overbooking and other issues.

    Here is the vote on passage:

    The sponsor was a Republican, Rep. Reed was not a cosponsor, he voted AYE.


  6. Anonymous says:

    Why is passing a large number of Bills always considered a benchmark of the Congress’ and Congressional members accomplishments and value?
    Conservatives like to use the Freedom Index as a measurement of their Congressional members.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. whungerford says:

    Incumbents use scores and ratings selectively to show they are doing a good job. Many scores are relatively meaningless. Few affect election results. Conservatives, who find Tom’s freedom index score disappointing, vote for him anyway. Voters concerned for the environment probably oppose Tom regardless of his scores from conservation groups.


  8. whungerford says:

    As for Tom’s Lugar Center scores, my views aren’t affected at all. If they show Tom as bipartisan, they must be wrong–Tom is one of the most stalwart Republicans in Congress. “Bipartisan hero” is reelection posturing, a facade for Tom’s extreme partisan views, fake news.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Carol says:

    Well said, William.


  10. josephurban says:

    The so-called “Freedom Index” is actually a “Corporate Index”. If you read their literature and reasoning it has nothing to do with “freedom” and everything to do with allowing corporations to destroy the environment and rip off citizens with impunity. It takes the position that the moneyed interests should not be regulated at all by the people. And people do not have the right to a clean environment or protection from financial fraud. The fact that Reed has a 59% rating tells us quite a lot.


  11. Rynstone says:

    Here is an example of Bipartisan;
    A conservative group backed by billionaire donors Charles and David Koch is preparing to launch a six-figure ad campaign targeting Republican and Democratic lawmakers who voted for the $1.3 trillion spending package in March.

    Americans for Prosperity will drop the radio, print, digital and direct mail ads in the lawmaker’s districts as they arrive home for Memorial Day weekend.

    The Koch network is typically supportive of Republicans but they have been deeply disappointed by the GOP-controlled Congress this year. Lawmakers passed the massive spending bill but have failed to move on the Koch network’s legislative priorities, such as immigration reform.
    “It’s time to take a hard look at what lawmakers say, and what they actually do when it comes to reining in overspending,” said AFP spokesman Bill Riggs. “The $1.3 trillion omnibus spending bill passed by Congress in March showed a complete disregard for fiscal responsibility. Both parties are responsible for putting the country on an unsustainable fiscal path, which is why AFP is committed to holding both parties accountable.”

    The Republicans who will be targeted by the ad campaign are Reps. Hal Rogers (Ky.), Lou Barletta (Penn.), Mike Bishop (Mich.), Mike Simpson (Idaho), John Carter (Texas), Robert Aderholt (Ala.), Mark Amodei (Nev.), Jeff Fortenberry (Neb.), Tom Rooney (Fla.), and Ken Calvert (Calif.).

    AFP will also go after Democratic Reps. Stephanie Murphy (Fla.), Debbie Wasserman Schultz (Fla.), Pete Visclosky (Ind.), Henry Cuellar (Texas), Matt Cartwright (Penn.), Beto O’Rourke (Texas), and Tom O’Halleran (Ariz.).

    But AFP intends to reward some Republicans who voted against the bill. They will run ads thanking GOP Reps. Dave Brat (Va.), Glen Grothman (Wis.), Jim Renacci (Ohio), Steve Pearce (N.M.), Chris Stewart (Utah), Jason Lewis (Minn.), Tom Garrett (Va), Ted Budd (N.C.), Marsha Blackburn (Tenn.), Andy Harris (Md.), Tom Emmer (Minn.), Rod Blum (Iowa) and Mike Coffman (Colo.).

    The group is hoping the ad campaign will pressure lawmakers to rein in spending ahead of the September funding deadline, which comes just before the midterm elections.

    “Congress did the right thing when it passed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, but failing to control spending will undermine it,” Riggs said. “Lawmakers will have another chance to demonstrate their commitment to fiscal responsibility later this year when they consider 2019 funding legislation. We urge them to start now, seize the opportunity to stop overspending and deliver the president a spending bill he can sign.”

    Since Congressman Reed voted against this nonsensical Omnibus Spending Bill perhaps American For Prosperity will throw some campaign funds his way.


  12. whungerford says:

    President Trump did sign the latest omnibus bill. Tom Reed says he opposes such bills, but has most often voted in favor. His vote last time was meaningless–the GOP had the needed votes.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. josephurban says:

    I find it interesting that the Koch brothers go all out to oppose the Omnibus Bill to keep America functioning because it is “fiscally irresponsible…yet support the massive tax giveaway that has taken $1.3 TRILLION of our tax dollars and redistributed them to the wealthiest 1%. Hmmm. I guess they are quite selective when it comes to “fiscal responsibility” issues.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. whungerford says:

    The Kochs may pose as good government reformers, but the bottom line is always lessez-faire–leave us alone.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. josephurban says:

    William. the bottom line for the “laissez-faire” folks is this. The taxpayers should provide us with safety, roads, railways, electricity, police and everything else needed for business to thrive. But we should pay no taxes for it. Leave us alone when it comes to paying our fair share.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Rynstone says:

    Under President Obama the Justice Agency was partisan.

    On a weekly basis more and more of the truth is being exposed. The Democrat Party, President Obama and Hillary Clinton used the Partsianship of the Justice Department as a weapon against the Trump campaign. James Comey, James Clapper and Brennan. All three are lying to Congress and teh American people. Now these three are running around to any talk shows that will have them trying to discredit the Trump Administration and some hawking books.
    Not to mention the lying of Loretta Lynch about her meeting with President Clinton during the Hillary Clinton email investigation. Susan Rice, Valarie Jarret and many of the Obama Administration were corrupt. All of these bums thougtb Hillary would be the next President and this would have all been swept under the rug.
    Clapper on his lying which he said was not really lying?!?!?!?!?
    James Clapper is a piece of crap. These bums were in charge of the intelligence agencies of teh USA?!?!?!?!?

    The Main Street Media does not cover any of this news (This is important)

    With the current NSA and FBI and CIA and all the other intelligence agencies there is no longer any privacy in teh US and they are violating the US Constitution.


  17. whungerford says:

    The Main Street Media does not cover any of this news, but fake news does. (This is important)

    Liked by 1 person

  18. josephurban says:

    Ryn. I LOVE your posts. They are so easy to dissect and demonstrate they are wrong.
    For example, you say Justice Department under Lynch was partisan against the GOP. Yet, there was an investigation concerning the MULTIPLE contacts with the Trump organization/campaign and Russians, but that investigation was kept SECRET for the American people. Why didn’t they leak this before the election? On the contrary, they did leak the nothing burger Clinton email story right before the election, which probably cost her the election. If the Justice Department was against the GOP or Trump, as you claim, why not expose him BEFORE the voting? You see, your logic does not make sense.
    Regarding Clapper. There is nothing in the OPINION PIECE (and it is not a news article, just an opinion piece) you cited that says he was in any way “partisan”. Nothing. Nowhere in the hit piece does it say he was partisan. It accuses him of lying about the collection of metadata. Again, your own “source” refutes your points.
    Just repeating what you hear on Fox does not amount to evidence. Give us some FACTS!
    The question you seem to evade in all your posts. Why did the Trump campaign have more than 70 contacts with Russians? All of which they hid for the US government? Why have 5 people associated with the Trump campaign already been found guilty? Why have there been 19 indictments? Why does Mr Trump refuse to sit down and talk with the Mueller investigation into the well documented Russian influence on the 2016 election?
    Also, nothing in your opinion piece gives us any facts or evidence to back up your claim that Lynch, Rice or Jarrett are corrupt.


  19. Rynstone says:

    Wow…Talk about Partisan…… Imagine if Conservative political pundits spoke out like this on the election of President Obama. They would have been called racists by many of the racists spouting off here. This is an incredibly vocal and public reaction to opposing the winner of the Presidential election. This is so unAmerican and so hypocritical it is almost unbelievable except this is how Progressive Liberals and fascists act.


  20. Rynstone says:

    Josepgurban, The people indicted from the Mueller investigation were indicted for possible illegal activities they did before coming to work on teh Trump campaign. None have been indicted for the charge of “collusion” with the Russians as the investigation was tasked with discovering.
    From what several media legal experts & advisers have told us over the past year, collusion is not against the law in this particular case.


  21. whungerford says:

    Conspiracy is a crime as are violations of election laws what several media legal experts & advisers have told us notwithstanding.


  22. josephurban says:

    Ryn posts: “Josepgurban, The people indicted from the Mueller investigation were indicted for possible illegal activities they did before coming to work on teh Trump campaign. ”
    … Here is the indictment against FLYNN…note the dates….

    “…Violation: 18 U.S.C. 1001 (False Statements)

    The Special Counsel informs the Court:

    Count One
    On or about January 24, 2017, defendant MICHAEL T. FLYNN did willfully and knowingly make materially false, fictitious, and fraudulent statements and representations in a matter within the jurisdiction of the executive branch of the Government of the United States, to wit, the defendant falsely stated and represented to agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation,
    in Washington, D.C….”

    AND, the 25 section of the indictment of Manafort and Gates…note the dates…..

    “…25. In September 2016, after numerous recent press reports concerning MANAFORT, the Department of Justice informed MANAFORT, GATES, and DMI that it sought to determine whether they had acted as agents of a foreign principal under the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), without registering. In November 2016 and February 2017, MANAFORT, GATES, and DMI caused false and misleading letters to be submitted to the Department of Justice, which mirrored the false cover story set out above. The letters, both of which were approved by MANAFORT and GATES before they were submitted, represented, among other things….”

    Flynn, Manafort and Gates have been indicted for actions taken in 2016 and 2017…

    Liked by 1 person

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